Republican Riders in the Saddle Again
Congress’s efforts to pass the massive bills that authorize government spending are being tied up because some Republicans insist on attaching to the bills unrelated amendments called “riders,” many of which aim to undermine environmental protections. Defenders of Wildlife says that Republicans have placed at least 56 anti-environmental riders on 10 appropriations bills, including measures dealing with grazing, dam removal, wetlands, drinking water standards, and global warming. One rider would delay stronger environmental regulation of hard-rock mining. Another would block an administration plan to release more water from dams on the Missouri River to improve wildlife habitat. The White House has threatened to veto a number of the spending bills, in part because of the riders.