The two rulings, where Stevens voted with the majority, were the decision that New London, Conn., could use eminent domain to take the property of several homeowners for a development, and the one that federal drug laws pre-empt state laws allowing marijuana use for medical purposes, the New York Times reported. Stevens talked about them in a speech last week to a bar association in Las Vegas.
"In each I was convinced that the law compelled a result that I would have opposed if I were a legislator," Stevens said.
The Times suggested Stevens may have been trying to send a signal on the nomination of Judge John Roberts to succeed the retiring Justice Sandra Day O'Connor -- that a Supreme Court nominee's views on the law are more important than their views on issues.
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