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Public Citizen Supports U.S. Senate Introduction of the For the People Act

March 27, 2019

Public Citizen Supports U.S. Senate Introduction of the For the People Act

Statements of Public Citizen Experts

Note: U.S. Sens. Tom Udall (D-Colo.) and Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.) today introduced the For the People Act – the most sweeping pro-democracy and anti-corruption legislation of the past 50 years and which the U.S. House of Representatives passed in February. Public Citizen submitted written testimony for the bill’s House passage and will support efforts to have the bill considered in the U.S. Senate.

“The For the People Act responds to the public’s overwhelming demand for fundamental and far-reaching reforms to our corrupt political system. Its enactment would remove the political barriers to the policy agenda favored by the public – slashing medicine prices, providing Medicare for All, preventing climate catastrophe, providing a living wage, holding Wall Street accountable and more – an agenda currently thwarted by the political power of corporations and the superrich. Now the bill heads to the Senate. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell brought up the Green New Deal. Why is he scared of a vote on the For the People Act?”

– Robert Weissman, president

“U.S. senators have an important opportunity to prove to the American people that they value pro-democracy reforms and reject government corruption, disenfranchisement and too much money in our politics. The public has lost confidence in our federal government. Fixing our election system must be the first order of business to preserve our democracy.

The For the People Act personifies values like access to the ballot, restoring voting rights and reforming ethics laws. Americans have spoken. They want a Congress that ensures that our public officials work for the people and not for profits.”

– Lisa Gilbert, vice president of legislative affairs

“Americans firmly believe in ‘draining the swamp’ in Washington, D.C. It was a campaign pledge that helped elect President Donald Trump in 2016, and it was Trump’s betrayal of this pledge that helped elect a new Congress in 2018.

That new Congress is heeding the call and living up to its promise by pulling together the most sweeping anti-corruption legislative package ever seen in recent history. At more than 600 pages, the For the People Act reins in big money in politics, curbs gerrymandering, makes it far easier for Americans to participate in elections, slows the revolving door between government and the private sector, applies conflict-of-interest laws across all levels of government and establishes a means to enforce all these new ethics laws.”

– Craig Holman, government affairs lobbyist, Public Citizen’s Congress Watch division