Obama tried to pull a fast one, but what else is new?
Obama’s administration said racial bias claims can be based on seemingly neutral practices that may have a discriminatory effect in housing; in other word, America is practicing “unfair housing.”
U.S. District Judge Richard Leon saw through this ruse, and ruled the Fair Housing Act allows for only direct discrimination claims and not those based on so-called disparate impact allegations.
So-called, because that’s what the calls of racism have become, “so-called.” And these so-called allegations are being made by very real race-pimps, of which Obama is the Mack!
Judge Leon almost mockingly wrote that the administration’s view that the language of the Fair Housing Act assumes that disparate impact claims are permitted “appears to be nothing more than wishful thinking on steroids.”
This is a huge win to circumvent a problem that is far in the past. What Obama wanted was an open door for claims of discrimination that would have insurance companies in litigation forever.
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For example, the National Fair Housing Alliance sued Allstate Corp in 2012 for refusing to insure flat-roofed houses in Delaware, claiming the practice had a discriminatory effect on poor minorities most likely to live in such buildings. What next, suing for rate increases in “bad neighborhoods?”
The Supreme Court will take up a related case and is likely to decide by the end of June once and for all whether the Fair Housing Act allows for disparate impact lawsuits, so this is just a temporary ruling.
The Fair Housing Act which was passed in 1968 does not specifically allow disparate impact claims. However courts have permitted lawsuits making such allegations for decades. The Supreme Court has never ruled on the issue, though there were two cases set to go before SCOTUS. The cases were settled before a ruling by the justices.
It should come as no surprise that the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development issued the rule in 2013 to codify the administration’s position that disparate impact claims should be allowed. This was done after Obama’s administration found out that the SCOTUS would likely rule on the issue, so they wanted their position clear.
So what can America expect. Anything that has to do with insurance rates on bad housing will be considered “unfair.” If you live in a flood zone, tornado alley, near power lines, across the tracks, or whatever, it will all be considered “unfair.”
The case is American Insurance Association v. U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, No. 13-00966.