The eleventh-hour bid, which came as thousands of people may soon face the process of being forced from their homes, faltered amid caucus divisions. About a dozen House Democrats opposed the measure and were unwilling to budge, two senior Democratic aides told NBC News.
“Definitely don’t have the votes,” one leadership aide said.
House Speaker Nancy Nancy Pelosi and the sponsor of a measure to extend the ban, Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif., were at odds Friday over whether to hold a vote and force members to make their positions publicly known.
Waters wanted a vote, which would have allowed progressive activists to blame specific Democratic lawmakers for its failure, while Pelosi didn’t want to expose some of her caucus members to the wrath of the base, according to the second aide.
Ultimately, the effort died when Majority Leader Steny Hoyer tried to pass the measure by unanimous consent — a process that doesn’t require a vote — and a Republican member objected. Congress is now leaving town, with the House not expected back in until Sept. 20.
Related: “[T]he moratorium has left an enormous $21 billion tab in unpaid rent built up. Whenever the order finally expires, crushing bills will come due. They will either bankrupt delinquent renters, leave landlords in the lurch, or, unfortunately, be passed on to taxpayers via a bailout. The longer the eviction moratorium continues, the more this dysfunction magnifies. Of course, that only gives politicians more incentive to expand it into perpetuity to avoid having to face the fallout from their poor policy decisions. The ultimate loser from such cowardice, though, is American taxpayers. Remember that next time you hear the word ‘temporary’ attached to a proposal for a new government program.”