In a letter sent today to House Speaker Paul Ryan, 36 reform groups and individuals with expertise in governance issues called on Speaker Ryan to oppose the Goodlatte proposal and remove it from the House rules being considered by the full House today. (See below for a full list of the signers of the letter.)

The groups and individuals also wrote to all House members urging them to vote against the House rules if the Goodlatte proposal is not removed.

The letter to Speaker Ryan said: “The proposal offered by House Judiciary Chairman Bob Goodlatte and adopted by the House Republican conference yesterday will eviscerate the Office of Congressional Ethics. The proposal would gut the only institution in the House that has successfully enforced the House ethics rules and, through its presence, has served to deter ethics violations by House members.”

“The Goodlatte proposal will serve as an open invitation to members to violate the House ethics rules without concern that they will be held accountable for their improper conduct. The fact that this irresponsible proposal has been adopted by House Republicans without public notice and by a sneak attack makes it all the more indefensible,” the letter continued.

The letter said, “We strongly oppose the Goodlatte proposal and urge that it be removed from the House rules to be considered today. If it is not removed we urge that the House rules be opposed until it is removed.”

The letter concluded, “If you are opposed to the Goodlatte proposal, then we call on you to exercise your powers as speaker to open the House rules today to allow a separate vote on removing the Goodlatte proposal from the rules. Otherwise, you will also be responsible for the destruction of the Office of Ethics and of ethics enforcement in the House.”

Signers to the letter include:

Democracy 21

Anna Manual

Brennan Center for Justice

Campaign Legal Center

Center for American Progress

Center for Media and Democracy

Center for Responsive Politics

Common Cause

Communication Workers of America


Demand Progress


Free Speech For People

Gary D. Bass

Issue One

Jim Thurber

Kathleen Clark

League of Women Voters


National Legal and Policy Center
Every Voice

Norman Eisen

Norman Orenstein

People For the American Way

Project On Government Oversight (POGO)

Public Citizen


Richard Painter

Robert Reich

Sunlight Foundation

The Agenda Project

The Patriotic Millionaires

Thomas Mann

Transparency International – USA


Attachments: (2 total)