WASHINGTON (AP) — The Agriculture Department says it will appeal a judge’s ruling that it would be “arbitrary and capricious” to move forward during a global health crisis with food stamp changes that could force  hundreds of thousands from the program.

Federal Judge Beryl Howell, in a ruling late last week, stopped a set of changes that would have taken effect on April 1.

On Wednesday, an Agriculture Department spokesperson responded to an Associated Press query with a terse email, saying only that “USDA disagrees with the court’s reasoning and will appeal its decision.”

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