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Rep. Tlaib Promotes Using Eminent Domain to Seize GM Property to Create ‘Green New Deal’

Craig Bannister
By Craig Bannister | February 1, 2019 | 1:56 PM EST

Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.) (Screenshot)

On Friday, Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.) promoted and quoted a video calling for the government to use eminent domain to seize plants closed by companies like General Motors (GM) – and use those plants to create Tlaib’s “Green New Deal.”

Tlaib tweeted a new video created by Greater Detroit Democratic Socialists of America, “Make the Green New Deal a Reality,” quoting its last line advocating using government to “take control” of corporate production capacity:

"Either we can continue to let corporations, who treat our communities and workers like disposable resources, dictate our fate, or we can take control of our situation, and use our productive capacity to address our common crisis.#GreenNewDeal"

If a company like GM closes a plant, the government should “use eminent domain to take it back and use it for the people,” the video argues:

“If companies, like General Motors, won’t keep their plants open, even after accepting massive, public-funded bailouts, let’s take them back and use them to make the Green New Deal a reality.

“After all, GM used eminent domain in the 80’s to destroy a low-income neighborhood in Hamtramck. If they can destroy an entire community to build a plant, only to abandon it later, why can’t we use eminent domain to take it back and use it for the people?

“We have the ability. Now, all we need is the public will.”

The video advocates seizing property from profit-hungry corporations to create “engines of the Green New Deal”:

“What was once used to generate corporate profit can now be used, not only to create good union jobs, but also to build the sustainable energy future we so desperately need.”

….

“We only need the political will to convert these abandoned plants into the engines of the green new deal.”

A full transcript of the video’s closing call for using eminent domain to take corporate property is below:

Generations have been lost to poverty, with little hope for the future, and an ecological nightmare threatens life as we know it.

Yet, there is a silver lining in this tragedy. Through this abandonment, we have inherited a massive amount of used industrial capacity. What was once used to generate corporate profit can now be used, not only to create good union jobs, but also to build the sustainable energy future we so desperately need.

This is an unparalleled opportunity that combines both our proven potential for massive industrial output along with the urgent need for a new, green infrastructure to halt the climate crisis. This could be a historic victory for both economic justice and ecological sanity.

We only need the political will to convert these abandoned plants into the engines of the green new deal.

If companies, like General Motors, won’t keep their plants open, even after accepting massive, public-funded bailouts, let’s take them back and use them to make the Green New Deal a reality.

After all, GM used eminent domain in the 80’s to destroy a low-income neighborhood in Hamtramck. If they can destroy an entire community to build a plant, only to abandon it later, why can’t we use eminent domain to take it back and use it for the people?

We have the ability. Now, all we need is the public will.

Either we can continue to let corporations, who treat our communities and workers like disposable resources, dictate our fate, or we can take control of our situation, and use our productive capacity to address our common crisis.

 

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