House Approps Republicans Added These Ridiculous Riders to the Annual Spending Bills

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WASHINGTON, D.C. – House Appropriations Republicans have loaded up majority-drafted annual spending bills with at least 113 poison pill policy riders so far, many of which are ridiculous, outrageous, and absurd.

“Many of the most ridiculous riders touch on the latest right-wing bugaboos like gas stoves, Hunter Biden, and government efforts to combat potentially dangerous disinformation. Others are special favors for notorious bad actors, such as Big Tobacco, sleazy car dealers, and crypto bros,” said Lisa Gilbert, executive vice president of Public Citizen and co-chair of the Clean Budget Coalition, which is tracking them and has repeatedly called on Congress to remove all of them. “Our annual spending bills are no place for any of this.”

Here are the 15 most ridiculous riders so far:

  • The IRS Free Filing Prohibition Rider would prohibit the IRS from developing free tax filing software without prior approval from key financial committees in both chambers of Congress that would allow any taxpayer to file their taxes for free.
  • The Nicotine Rider would stop the U.S. Food and Drug Administration from proposing a rule to reduce nicotine levels in cigarettes to make them less addictive.
  • The Gas Stoves Rider would prohibit the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission from using funds to stop the use or sale of gas-powered stoves, cooktops, ranges, or ovens in the U.S., even if the product is proven to cause harm.
  • The Hunter Biden Rider would ban security clearances for any signatory to the “Public Statement on the Hunter Biden Emails” dated October 19, 2020 – limiting the free speech of those expressing ideas the majority opposes.
  • The Dollar Bill Rider would block the U.S. Treasury Department and the U.S. Bureau of Engraving and Printing from redesigning the $1 bill.
  • The Crypto Rider would block the Treasury Department from issuing its own legitimate digital currency that might compete with scammy, privately issued cryptocurrencies. It also would block any hypothetical attempt to end the use of paper currency as legal tender in the U.S., which no one is trying to do.
  • The Sleazy Car Dealers Rider would block the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) Motor Vehicle Dealers Trade Regulation Rule, which prohibits car and truck dealers from making certain misrepresentations while selling, leasing, or arranging financing for motor vehicles. The rule would require accurate pricing disclosures in dealers’ ads and sales discussions, require them to obtain consumers’ express and informed consent for charges, prohibit the sale of any add-on product or service that confers no benefit to the consumer, and require dealers to keep records of ads and customer transactions.
  • The Defrauded Consumers Rider would add additional obstacles to an FTC rule that challenges bogus money-making claims used to lure consumers, workers, and prospective entrepreneurs into risky business ventures that often turn into dead-end debt traps. The rule allows the agency to recover redress for defrauded consumers and seek steep penalties against the multilevel marketers, for-profit colleges, gig economy platforms, and other bad actors who prey on people’s hopes for economic advancement.
  • The “Business Opportunity” Rider would add additional obstacles to an FTC rule that requires business opportunity sellers to give prospective buyers specific information to help them evaluate a business opportunity, ensuring that the prospective purchasers have the information they need to assess the risks of a work-at-home program or any other business opportunity.
  • The Food Marketed to Children Rider would add obstacles thwarting the completion of an interagency report on how food is marketed to children. The report is aimed at developing a range of voluntary, self-regulatory principles that industry can embrace to improve children’s health and nutrition.
  • The CISA Disinformation Rider: Limits the U.S. Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency’s ability to counter disinformation efforts by domestic extremists and other adversaries who seek to harm critical infrastructure and our communities.
  • The Special Advisors Rider would prohibit funds from being used for envoys or special advisors unless they have been authorized by Congress or confirmed by the Senate.
  • The Federal Telework Rider would prohibit funding for federal agencies until they return to specified telework policies, practices, and levels.
  • The Congressional Control Rider would mean the District of Columbia cannot spend its own local funds without approval from Congress.
  • The D.C. Stoplight Rider would prohibit funds from being used to enact or carry out any law that prohibits motorists from making right turns on red.