Former President Donald Trump HUD Secretary Dr. Ben Carson told Newsmax Monday that the recent eviction moratorium extension by President Joe Biden’s Centers for Disease Control and Prevention through Oct. 3 is not legal.
“Obviously, it's not legal,” Carson said during “Cortes & Pellegrino” Monday night. “We need to recognize that the environment is very different than when the moratorium on evictions was first enacted during the Trump administration. We had a raging viral epidemic going on at that point. We did not have a vaccine, and we didn't have other treatments that were judged acceptable.”
Carson said the country now has vaccines in place, jobs available, and federally designated money to go to the landlords to pay the back rents caused by the lockdowns.
“We need to be talking about why the government is so inefficient in terms of distribution,” Carson said. “But even more important (is) that we need to be talking about policies that don't create dependency in our system. That is going to be the biggest problem.”
The CDC extended the moratorium last week, calling it a “new” circumstance since the last moratorium extension.
“CDC is issuing a new order temporarily halting evictions in counties with heightened levels of community transmission in order to respond to recent, unexpected developments in the trajectory of the COVID-19 pandemic, including the rise of the delta variant,” the agency said Aug. 3, shortly after the previous extension expired. “It is intended to target specific areas of the country where cases are rapidly increasing, which likely would be exacerbated by mass evictions.”
The Biden administration came under fire for allowing the moratorium, enacted at the height of the COVID pandemic and its ensuing lockdowns and high unemployment, to expire at the end of July.
Landlord organizations sued the government to end the moratorium and asked the U.S. Supreme Court to vacate the measure.
Writing for the court on June 29, Associate Justice Brett Kavanaugh wrote the concurring opinion of the court, stating that it would not vacate the moratorium at that time because it only had a couple of weeks left, but said that a further extension should only be granted by the Congress through new legislation.
The court also found that the CDC had overstepped its “statutory authority” in initially granting the moratorium.
Carson also took issue with big real estate investment firms that are buying up foreclosures and properties owned by smaller investors that now must sell because of the lack of rent payments.
“The big businesses who are in bed with the government. Isn't that almost the definition of fascism, which seems to be creeping into our society very, very quickly,” Carson said. “We better wake up pretty quickly because it's very hard to get rid of.”
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