Oppose Ideological Riders to FY 2017 Appropriations Bills (House)

Categories: Advocacy Letter

Recipient: U.S. House of Representatives

View the PDF of this letter here.

Dear Representative,

On behalf of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, a coalition charged by its diverse membership of more than 200 national organizations to promote and protect the rights of all persons in the United States, we write to strongly urge you to oppose any FY 2017 appropriations bills that include ideological policy riders.

The Leadership Conference believes that it is inappropriate and irresponsible to attach ideological policy riders to appropriations bills. Altering laws, proposing new ones, or preventing executive orders from being implemented should be done through regular order in the authorizing committees. We were deeply troubled by the appearance of hundreds of policy riders on appropriations legislation in both the House of Representatives and Senate last year, and very relieved that the final omnibus appropriations bill was largely a clean bill. Rather than engaging in unnecessary and destructive brinksmanship over riders, we continue to believe that Congress should focus on doing its job: working in a timely, bipartisan fashion to pass legislation to fund the government. We strongly encourage all members of Congress to abide by this principle.

Last year, Congress threatened to roll back rulemaking processes, weaken critical protections in areas such as housing, immigration, labor, and education, and cut funding to critical programs. Slipping ideological riders into must-pass funding legislation short circuits regular order and masks the riders’ true intent from the American people.

We urge Members of Congress to oppose flawed funding proposals that include ideological policy riders. We further urge the administration in the strongest possible terms to oppose any funding bills that have such riders, whether moving via regular order or as part of a funding package. Thank you for your consideration. If you have any questions, please contact Emily Chatterjee, Senior Counsel, at (202) 466-3648.


Wade Henderson
President & CEO

Nancy Zirkin
Executive Vice President