Press Release: 149 Groups Urge Congress to Remove Poison Pill Riders and Fund Our Government

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WASHINGTON, D.C. – In a letter sent today to all 535 congressional offices, 149 groups in the Clean Budget Coalition called on Congress to pass a clean omnibus, free from poison pill policy riders. Poison pill riders threaten workers, consumers and families as well as our communities, environment and economy, and they should be removed from any final or short-term funding agreement, the coalition maintains.

“Poison pill riders are unpopular as standalone legislation, and the public opposes using them to roll back public protections,” the letter reads. “Appropriations bills continue to be misused to undermine essential safeguards through partisan poison pill ‘policy riders’ – provisions that address extraneous and unpopular policy issues. Slipping unrelated and damaging issues into must-pass appropriations bills as a means to win approval is a dangerous strategy for the public.”

Congress is expected to pass another short-term continuing resolution by Jan. 19 to avoid a costly and disruptive government shutdown and then begin work on an omnibus funding bill for FY 2018. In addition to opposing harmful riders, the letter also urges Congress to raise spending caps to fund critical programs for the American people and to maintain parity between defense and nondefense funding.

“Any omnibus passed through Congress must go far beyond the obviously inadequate sequester funding levels, to robustly fund agencies and programs to protect the public. We urge Members of Congress to support increasing the spending caps to fund pivotal programs for the American people with parity between defense and nondefense funds, while opposing any flawed omnibus that includes poison pill policy riders,” the letter says.

The Clean Budget Coalition was founded in 2015 to oppose poison pill riders attached to government funding legislation. Visit CleanBudget.org to learn more.

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