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Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson. Photo: Aaron P. Bernstein/Getty Images

Three civil rights groups are suing Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary Ben Carson for his agency's suspension of a fair housing rule that required state and local governments to review segregated housing patterns, the Washington Post first reported and Axios has confirmed.

Why it matters: In a draft of the document, obtained by Axios, the groups argue that by suspending the federal regulation to “affirmatively further fair housing” in January 2018, HUD is "effectively removing civil rights oversight of as much as $5.5 billion per year until 2024 or later for almost 1,000 jurisdictions."

Background: HUD adopted these federal regulations in 2015, though it technically applied to all of the agency's funding since the Fair Housing Act was passed in 1968.

The problem, according to the lawsuit: "Under HUD’s pre-2015 process, jurisdictions throughout the country routinely ignored problems of segregation and discrimination while continuing to collect HUD funds."

What they're saying: “It took HUD almost 50 years to create an effective way to ‘affirmatively further’ fair housing — one that would actually eliminate the barriers that keep people of color trapped in segregated, low-opportunity neighborhoods,” said Sherrilyn Ifill, LDF President and Director-Counsel.

Go deeper

Updated 46 mins ago - Sports

Simone Biles won't compete in individual vault or uneven bars Olympic finals

Photo: Loic Venance/AFP via Getty Images

Simone Biles will not compete in the individual vault or uneven bars finals at the Tokyo Olympics, USA Gymnastics announced Friday.

Why it matters: USA Gymnastics said Biles, who previously withdrew from the individual all-around and team finals to prioritize her mental health, will continue to be evaluated to determine if she'll compete in the balance beam or floor exercise events.

1 hour ago - Sports

American Katie Ledecky wins Olympic gold in women's 800m freestyle

USA's Katie Ledecky reacts after taking gold in the final of the women's 800m freestyle race. Photo: Odd Anderson/AFP via Getty Images

American superstar swimmer Katie Ledecky grabbed her second gold medal of this year's Olympic Games, winning the women's 800-meter freestyle race Saturday in Tokyo.

Driving the news: Ledecky, who holds the world record in the 800m freestyle, is considered one of the best women swimmers of all time. Saturday's final marks her third straight Olympic gold in the event.

1 hour ago - Sports

Caeleb Dressel breaks world record in men's 100m butterfly, wins 3rd gold in Tokyo

Photo: Jean Catuffe/Getty Images

American swimmer Caeleb Dressel broke the world record in the men's 100-meter butterfly final in Tokyo on Saturday, picking up his third gold medal of this year's Games.

The big picture: Dressel finished with a time of 49.45 seconds. Hungary's Kristóf Milák won the silver, and Switzerland's Noe Ponti took the bronze.