US Appeals Court Rejects Bid to Block CDC’s Eviction Moratorium

By Zachary Stieber
Zachary Stieber
Zachary Stieber
Zachary Stieber covers U.S. and world news. He is based in Maryland.
August 20, 2021 Updated: August 20, 2021

An appeals court panel on Friday rejected a bid by landlords and real estate groups to block the U.S. government’s latest eviction moratorium.

In June, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia denied a motion to block the nationwide moratorium in place at the time.

A three-judge panel of the court on Friday referred to that decision, as well as one made by a lower court last week.

“In view of that decision and on the record before us, we likewise deny the emergency motion,” the panel said in a one-page order.

The panel consisted of Judges Cornelia Pillard, an Obama nominee; Neomi Rao, a Trump nominee; and Ketanji Brown Jackson, a Biden nominee.

Plaintiffs, including landlords, had asked the court to block the near-nationwide moratorium that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) put into place on Aug. 3.

Plaintiffs alleged the eviction moratorium was illegal because the CDC does not have the authority to ban evictions. Defendants said the agency does.

Looming over the recent decisions, including Friday’s, is a June 29 Supreme Court decision on the CDC’s previous eviction ban. In a narrow 5-4 decision, the nation’s top court left the ban in place until it expired on July 31.

Justice Brett Kavanaugh, a Trump nominee, sided with four other justices to keep the ban in place. In his concurring opinion, though, he said he believes the CDC exceeded its authority by implementing the moratorium and any extension of the ban would require “clear and specific congressional authorization” through new legislation.

Congress failed to pass an extension or a new ban, but the Executive Branch several days after the expiration decided to put into place a new one that affects the vast majority of the country.

So far, judges have ruled for the government.

“We are disappointed in today’s ruling, but the plaintiffs will continue fighting on behalf of America’s mom-and-pop housing providers and plan to file an emergency motion to the Supreme Court immediately,” Patrick Newton, a spokesman for the National Association of Realtors, told The Epoch Times in an emailed statement.

“With a majority of the Supreme Court in agreement that any further extension of this eviction moratorium requires congressional authorization, we are confident and hopeful for a quick resolution. Moving forward, federal and state governments should be focusing all energy on the swift distribution of nearly $50 billion in rental assistance available for struggling tenants,” he added.

Zachary Stieber
Zachary Stieber covers U.S. and world news. He is based in Maryland.