The Obama administration’s heavy-handed attempts at social engineering just moved to a disturbing new level — right in Westchester.
The Justice Department wants the county held in contempt of court, fined $60,000 a month and forced to set up an escrow account of $1.65 million — in a move growing out of its longstanding claim that the county’s housing policies are racist.
It’s a preposterous claim, of course. And Friday, County Executive Rob Astorino holds a press conference to decry it.
Good for him. Because the move is based on a technicality, and it actually says more about Team Obama’s overreach than about anything the county has or hasn’t done.
The Justice Department’s claim focuses on 28 units of “affordable” housing that are to be built in downtown Chappaqua, home of Hillary Clinton. Under a 2009 consent decree, Westchester agreed to build 750 units in wealthy, largely white towns and to “market them aggressively” to non-whites. Financing for the first 450 units was to have been approved by the end of last year.
Westchester actually met that deadline — but the feds disqualified the Chappaqua project anyway, because the town hadn’t yet issued all required permits by Dec. 31. And because Astorino’s office, the feds say, didn’t ride roughshod over the town and bully it into submission.
Let’s be honest: For years, the administration has been trying to, as one official put it, “remove zip codes in the quality of life in America.” Meaning anyone should be able to live anywhere, even if they can’t afford it.
Its legal case is based on the dubious notion of “disparate impact” — statistical differences by race without any specific proof of actual discrimination.
Want more evidence Justice’s act is politically motivated? Note, then, that it filed its motion despite the fact that the Chappaqua housing project was recently fast-tracked.