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Judge halts Biden administration's no-whites-allowed farmer debt relief program

Biden administration is "radically undermining bedrock principles of equality under the law," group says.

Updated: June 13, 2021 - 10:08am

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A Wisconsin judge has suspended a Biden administration program that funneled debt relief exclusively to nonwhite farmers after the program was the target of a lawsuit by a conservative group and a coalition of farmers. 

Judge William Griesbach of Wisconsin's Eastern District issued the temporary stay Thursday following a lawsuit filed in April by the Wisconsin Institute for Law and Liberty. 

The court "recognized that the federal government’s plan to condition and allocate benefits on the basis of race raises grave constitutional concerns and threatens our clients with irreparable harm," Rick Esenberg, president and general counsel for the  ​​​​​ Wisconsin Institute for Law and Liberty, told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. 

The Wisconsin nonprofit is representing a dozen farmers in several states in the suit. 

The nonwhites-only debt-relief program was part of the massive $1.9 trillion COVID stimulus package signed by President Joe Biden in March.