Published: September 2021

Protecting democracy from a lawless president

For decades, as the executive branch has increased its power, Congress has increasingly struggled to fulfil its constitutional duties to protect the rule of law by holding presidents accountable for overreaches and preventing abuses of presidential power. Advocates joined together to support the Protecting Our Democracy Act (HR 8363 and S 4880) in an effort to push for necessary institutional reforms to protect our democracy and restore Congress’s ability to check and balance the executive branch, without infringing on the president’s constitutional powers.

Following the Watergate scandal, Congress passed a series of landmark reforms to protect our country’s democracy and restore Americans’ faith in government. The legislation strengthened transparency and ethics standards in government, enhanced congressional oversight and placed significant limits on presidential powers. However, President Trump’s unique abuses have shown that more can be done to root out corruption and increase transparency for future presidents. The abuse of executive power and the politicization of the rule of law at federal agencies endangers the public’s interest in environmental protection, climate change, immigration justice, civil rights, racial justice, safe food, worker protection, public health, national security, and other issues. The Protecting Our Democracy Act (HR 8363 and S 4880) will shore up and create guardrails to protect against executive branch abuses of power that, left unaddressed, would threaten the fundamental public interests that the government exists to protect.

Lead Organization

Government Accountability Project

Other Organizations

Common Cause | Consumer Action | Faith in Public Life | Greenpeace | Public Citizen | Protect Democracy | Project on Government Oversight | Stand Up America

More Information

Click here to read the letter in full.

For more information, please visit the Protecting Our Democracy website.


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