U.S. Rep. Cori Bush spent Friday evening and early Saturday morning protesting outside the U.S. Capitol Building against an upcoming end to a COVID-19-related eviction moratorium.
The Missouri Democrat posted a photo on Twitter showing that she had been joined by fellow ‘Squad’ members Reps. Ayanna Pressley (D-Mass.) and Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) early Saturday morning.
“Millions are at risk of being removed from their homes, and a Democratic-controlled government has the power to stop it,” she tweeted around 1 a.m. ET. “Extend the eviction moratorium now.”
It’s 1 AM. Our solidarity is strong and our numbers are growing.
Millions are at risk of being removed from their homes, and a Democratic-controlled government has the power to stop it.
Extend the eviction moratorium now. pic.twitter.com/Rt0LFgViAN
— Cori Bush (@CoriBush) July 31, 2021
Bush also said that she had written to other Democrats and has asked them to join her in her protest, going on to claim that some people arrived in the early morning hours to join her.
“We are here! So many people are at risk of homelessness in our district and many have already experienced it. We are out here for them,” Omar wrote on Twitter in a post featuring the photo of her, Pressley, and Bush.
“We’ve got you, Sis,” Pressley added, tweeting out a photo of her holding a sign that says, “Housing is a human right,” surrounded by a few people.
We’ve got you, Sis.
— Ayanna Pressley (@AyannaPressley) July 31, 2021
In an earlier tweet, Bush posted a picture of herself with the lighted U.S. Capitol Building complex in the background, writing, “Many of my Democratic colleagues chose to go on vacation early today rather than staying to vote to keep people in their homes. I’ll be sleeping outside the Capitol tonight. We’ve still got work to do..”
The moratorium is set to expire on Saturday, which could result in millions of renters suddenly being made to leave their residences, even as local and state officials work to dole out some $46 billion in rent assistance to both landlords and tenants around the country.
On Friday, Democrats were not able to obtain enough support to extend the moratorium, leaving Washington, D.C., for a seven-week recess without taking a vote
Bush noted in a letter to her Democratic colleagues that she has been evicted three times over the course of her life and had been homeless at one point, living in her car with her two kids.
“Earlier today, I sent a letter to my colleagues stressing the urgency of extending the eviction moratorium. Many of them failed to meet this moment. I’m inviting them now to join me in sleeping outside the Capitol in a push to extend the moratorium. It’s not too late,” she tweeted Friday evening in a post with a screengrab of her letter.
🚨UPDATE: Earlier today, I sent a letter to my colleagues stressing the urgency of extending the eviction moratorium. Many of them failed to meet this moment.
— Congresswoman Cori Bush (@RepCori) July 31, 2021
“I’m a formerly unhoused Congresswoman, and I know that people will die if we let the eviction moratorium expire,” she added in a separate tweet, using different verbiage to describe being “homeless.”
“We have a deeply rooted misconception in our country that unhoused people have done something to deserve their conditions – when the reality is that unhoused people are living the consequences of our government’s failure to secure the basic necessities people need to survive,” she wrote.
“If Congress does not act now, the fallout of the eviction crisis will undoubtedly set us backwards as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to ravish our communities – needlessly contributing to more death and suffering,” she continued.
The Huffington Post reported that Bush introduced the Unhoused Bill of Rights resolution on Friday requiring the government to declare homelessness a public health emergency, thereby putting taxpayers on the hook for housing subsidies.
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