Judge Throws Out Nationwide Eviction Moratorium

The decision came from a Trump-appointed judge in Washington, DC.

Michael Dwyer/AP

Let our journalists help you make sense of the noise: Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter and get a recap of news that matters.

On Wednesday, a federal judge invalidated the national eviction moratorium first enacted at the start of the pandemic and most recently extended by the Biden administration through the end of June. 

Though the moratorium has been challenged in a number of courts, the ruling from Judge Dabney Friedrich of the US District Court for the District of Columbia is the first to nullify the moratorium on a nationwide basis. Friedrich wrote in his decision that the Public Health Service Act—which the Centers for Disease Control cited to issue its original moratorium—does not give the agency authority to implement an eviction freeze as a national health measure. 

“Because the plain language of the Public Health Service Act unambiguously forecloses the nationwide eviction moratorium, the Court must set aside the CDC Order,” wrote Friedrich, who was appointed by former President Donald Trump .

The case was filed by a group of realtors from Alabama and Georgia, who said that the eviction moratorium was causing landlords like their association members to lose billions in unpaid rent.

According to the most recently available census data from April, at least 6.9 million households—and likely millions more—are currently behind on rent. These households are disproportionately Black and Latino, according to an analysis by the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities. The eviction moratorium has helped millions of these renters stay in their homes if they’re facing economic hardship during the pandemic. The latest stimulus package, passed by Congress in early March, allocates $45 billion in rental assistance. Biden’s CDC extended the moratorium through the end of June, in part to leave time to roll out these rent relief dollars. According to the Wall Street Journal, the White House has said it will weigh in on the ruling and what this could mean for renters later on Wednesday.

IT'S NOT THAT WE'RE SCREWED WITHOUT TRUMP:

"It's that we're screwed with or without him if we can't show the public that what we do matters for the long term," writes Mother Jones CEO Monika Bauerlein as she kicks off our drive to raise $350,000 in donations from readers by July 17.

This is a big one for us. It's our first time asking for an outpouring of support since screams of FAKE NEWS and so much of what Trump stood for made everything we do so visceral. Like most newsrooms, we face incredibly hard budget realities, and it's unnerving needing to raise big money when traffic is down.

So, as we ask you to consider supporting our team's journalism, we thought we'd slow down and check in about where Mother Jones is and where we're going after the chaotic last several years. This comparatively slow moment is also an urgent one for Mother Jones: You can read more in "Slow News Is Good News," and if you're able to, please support our team's hard-hitting journalism and help us reach our big $350,000 goal with a donation today.

payment methods

IT'S NOT THAT WE'RE SCREWED WITHOUT TRUMP:

"It's that we're screwed with or without him if we can't show the public that what we do matters for the long term," writes Mother Jones CEO Monika Bauerlein as she kicks off our drive to raise $350,000 in donations from readers by July 17.

This is a big one for us. So, as we ask you to consider supporting our team's journalism, we thought we'd slow down and check in about where Mother Jones is and where we're going after the chaotic last several years. This comparatively slow moment is also an urgent one for Mother Jones: You can read more in "Slow News Is Good News," and if you're able to, please support our team's hard-hitting journalism and help us reach our big $350,000 goal with a donation today.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate