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NEW YORK — New York Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez says “conservative Democrats” are to blame for the resumption of evictions.
Protection of evictions for millions has resumed, due partly to moderate Democrats in Congress refusing to support an extension of the eviction ban.
“We have to really just call a spade a spade. We cannot in good faith blame the Republican Party when House Democrats have a majority,” Ocasio-Cortez said on CNN‘s “State of the Union.”
The federal eviction moratorium expired at midnight on Saturday, leaving millions of Americans vulnerable to being evicted from their homes. The pandemic shutdown led to families losing their main sources of income and being unable to pay their rent or mortgages.
“The House and House leadership had the opportunity to vote to extend the moratorium… There was, frankly, a handful of conservative Democrats in the House that threatened to get on planes, rather than hold this vote.”
President Joe Biden did not escape the progressive Democrat’s ire. She says his administration has not been very clear on where it stands on the issue.
“We asked the Biden administration for their stance, and they were not being really forthright about that advocacy and that request until the day before the House adjourned,” she said. “The House was put into a needlessly difficult situation.”
She also adds that local governments have received just $3 billion of $46 billion promised.
“Each individual governor is responsible for establishing these programs. I think that, in some states, governors and state administrations might be slow-walking this process to get it out. In other states, [it’s] the administrative burden of setting it up,” she adds. “We’re at a point where, frankly, those state governments need to get it together,” she said. “But we cannot kick people out of their homes when our end of the bargain has not been fulfilled.”
Ocasio-Cortez says that House members have time to turn it around, and they have been informed they may need to return to the Capitol as the Senate works on an infrastructure bill.
“The House should reconvene and call this vote and extend the moratorium. There’s about 11 million people that are behind on their rent, at risk of eviction. That’s one out of every six renters in the United States,” she said.