The House has passed legislation to undercut a 2005 Supreme Court ruling that gives state and local governments eminent domain authority to seize private property for economic development projects.

Supporters of the bill say the 5-4 high court decision was an instance of overreach, and that the government should not be able to take away a private person's home or business for commercial purposes.

The Fifth Amendment of the Constitution says private property cannot be taken for public use without just compensation, and eminent domain has traditionally been used to obtain land for public projects such as highways or airports.

The bill would withhold for two years all federal development aid to states or locales that take private property for economic development. It now goes to the Senate.

 

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