A divided U.S. Supreme Court lifted the
Saying landlords were suffering “irreparable harm,” the conservative-controlled court ruled late Thursday that the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention lacked authority to impose the moratorium under the decades-old federal law the agency was invoking. The decision comes amid a spike of Covid cases around the country.
“It would be one thing if Congress had specifically authorized the action that the CDC has taken. But that has not happened,” the court said in an unsigned opinion. “It strains credulity to believe that this statute grants the CDC the sweeping authority that it asserts.”
White House Press Secretary
“As a result of this ruling, families will face the painful impact of evictions, and communities across the country will face greater risk of exposure to Covid-19,” Psaki said in a statement on Thursday night.
“The public interest strongly favors respecting the CDC’s judgment at this moment, when over 90% of counties are experiencing high transmission rates,” Breyer wrote for the group. “That figure is the highest it has been since at least last winter.”
The decision is the conservative-controlled court’s second blow to Biden this week. On Tuesday, the justices
The court had left intact a previous CDC moratorium in June, but Justice
Congress didn’t act and progressives instead pressured President
Justice Department lawyers argued that the delta variant of the virus had heightened the importance of the eviction ban to ensure that a wave of people aren’t forced into more crowded accommodations.
The challengers, a group of landlords and real-estate trade associations from Alabama and Georgia, said Biden’s remarks showed the administration was flouting the rule of law.
The Treasury Department
“We already know who is going to bear the brunt of this disastrous decision -- Black and brown communities, and especially Black women,” Bush said in a statement.
“My new proposal would ensure that both renters and landlords can independently apply for emergency rental assistance so that landlords get paid their back rent, and that the program works with less bureaucracy and red tape,” Waters said in a statement issued after the ruling.
The administration has been relying on a legal provision that authorizes the secretary of health and human services to “make and enforce such regulations as in his judgment are necessary to prevent the introduction, transmission, or spread of communicable diseases.” The CDC is housed within the Health and Human Services Department.
The case is Alabama Association of Realtors v. Department of Health and Human Services, 21A23.
(Adds Waters plans for legislative response in 17th paragraph)
--With assistance from
To contact the reporter on this story:
To contact the editors responsible for this story:
Kathleen Hunter, Magan Crane
© 2021 Bloomberg L.P. All rights reserved. Used with permission.