House

‘The Squad’ celebrates Biden eviction moratorium

Julia Nikhinson

Members of “the Squad,” including Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.), celebrated President Biden’s targeted 60-day eviction moratorium, holding up the action as a major progressive victory just days after the nationwide federal eviction ban expired.

Among the lawmakers to celebrate was Rep. Cori Bush (D-Mo.), who has been demonstrating on the steps of the Capitol for the past five days in protest of the moratorium expiring on Saturday and has been hailed as the key figure behind the administration’s latest action.

“On Friday night, I came to the Capitol with my chair. I refused to accept that Congress could leave for vacation while 11 million people faced eviction,” Bush tweeted. “For 5 days, we’ve been out here, demanding that our government acts to save lives. Today, our movement moved mountains.”

Bush shared a photo of herself with Ocasio-Cortez, as wells as Rep. Mondaire Jones (D-N.Y.) and Jimmy Gomez (D-Calif.), sitting on the steps of the Capitol, captioning the photo with “Grateful.”

The new eviction moratorium will ban evictions in counties that have high rates of transmission, affecting the same areas where the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has recommended that all people wear masks when indoors. It is expected to cover roughly 90 percent of renters in the U.S.

Other Squad members praised Bush for her activism while celebrating the stay on evictions.

“You get what you organize for. Thank you @CoriBush for leading on this,” Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) wrote on Twitter.

“One year ago today, this remarkable woman won her election. Today, she’s doing exactly what she promised, fighting to save lives,” Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D-Mass.) tweeted with a photo of Bush. “And we’re winning the good fight. Sis, so grateful for your heart, your soul, and your partnership.”

Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.) tweeted, “@CoriBush, you showed us what is possible. We are blessed to have you in Congress.”

Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.), who sponsored a House bill to extend the moratorium, issued a statement thanking Biden “from the bottom of my heart and on behalf of millions of renters.”

“This extension of the moratorium is the lifeline that millions of families have been waiting for. From the very beginning of this pandemic, it was clear that eviction moratoriums not only kept people housed, but also saved lives,” Waters said.

“With a surging COVID-19 delta variant, this action by the CDC helps to protect our public health, national security, and our economy. And so, as I have said before, this is not only a moral imperative, but it is also a public health imperative,” Waters added.

Gomez praised the passing of the eviction moratorium in a statement as a sort of “empathy and responsiveness” needed during a health crisis like the COVID-19 pandemic. However, he also called on more COVID-19 relief funds to be distributed, calling on Congress to better work with state and local governments to do so.

“While my House Democratic colleagues work to secure sustainable housing solutions for the most vulnerable among us, I’d like to extend my appreciation to President Biden for helping us pursue every available option to keep our constituents healthy and in their homes,” Gomez said.

“We applaud the White House for issuing this new eviction moratorium today. This is a huge victory, and we laud the White House for listening to the clarion call of our members, our colleagues, and communities around the country. The President understands that we must keep people in their homes, and we thank him for acting. It is not an exaggeration to say that the President’s action today will save lives,” Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.), chair of the The Congressional Progressive Caucus, said in a statement.

Jayapal singled out Bush for her work that “galvanized national attention and called on Washington to govern with moral clarity.”

“As a lifelong organizer, I am so proud that we have committed, clear-eyed activists like Rep. Bush in Congress who are leading the way. We can see that it gets results,” Jayapal said.

Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) also heaped praise on Bush, tweeting, “Thank you to everyone who kept a spotlight on this—particularly @CoriBush who understands what it’s like to lose your home and turned passion into action.”

Tags Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Ayanna Pressley Ayanna Pressley Charles Schumer Chuck Schumer Congressional Progressive Caucus Cori Bush Eviction moratoriums Female members of the United States House of Representatives Ilhan Omar Ilhan Omar Jimmy Gomez Joe Biden Maxine Waters Nancy Pelosi Pramila Jayapal President Biden Progressivism in the United States Rashida Tlaib Rashida Tlaib the squad

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