Monday, November 26, 2007

The Law Is An Ass-5

"One of the nation's most aggressive attempts to limit the mobility of convicted sex offenders was struck down Wednesday as the Georgia Supreme Court [GSC] declared unconstitutional the state's law restricting where they may live. ... Jerry Keen [JK], one of the law's sponsors, said he intended to make its restrictions onerous enough that offenders 'will want to move to another state'. ... Mann's attorney, Stephen Bailey Wallace, said his client was 'calmly pleased' with the ruling. 'The law didn't even pass the smell test,' he said. 'Under its provisions, a person could be forever moving--a nomad situation'," Houston Chronicle, 22 November.

While I'm pleased the GSC struck down this law that "didn't even pass the smell test", the GSC ruled narrowly on a Fifth Amendment takings ground. It should have ruled broadly and killed the law completely, telling Georgia's legislature "no mas". The GSC could have ruled the law restricted interstate commerce. Consider: if the law was intended to force sex offenders "to move to another state", that means they could not move back into Georgia. As I recollect, only the federal government can regulate interstate commerce, US Constitution, Article I, Section 8. The Georgia legislature presumably takes an oath to, among other things, uphold the US and Georgia constitutions. Wouldn't it be nice to see JK and the other supporters of this law impeached?

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