WASHINGTON – Today, the U.S. House of Representatives passed legislation introduced by Congressman Lance Gooden. The Settlement Slush Funds Act will significantly reform the management of settlement funds in federal cases.

The Settlement Slush Funds Act seeks to address long-standing concerns about the distribution and use of settlement money from federal lawsuits by returning the power of the purse to Congress. The historical record is littered with examples of these settlement funds not directed toward victims or taxpayer relief but rather toward unrelated and often partisan third-party groups. This legislation aims to end such practices, ensuring that settlement funds are used appropriately and not co-opted to fund Congressionally unapproved third parties.

"Today, we have made a decisive move towards greater accountability in our government," said Congressman Gooden. "The Settlement Slush Funds Act will ensure that settlement funds serve their rightful purpose – to compensate victims and provide relief to affected parties, not to be diverted for partisan purposes."

The Stop Settlement Slush Funds Act is endorsed by the National Taxpayers Union, Americans for Tax Reform, and Americans for Prosperity.
“For too long the Department of Justice has been misallocating settlement funds from civil suits to provide cash injections to political allies,” said Grover Norquist, President of Americans for Tax Reform. “This gross politicization of a government agency should be put to a stop immediately. I am proud to support Rep. Gooden’s bill to codify protections against the DOJ or any government official abusing their power to benefit special interest groups.”
"The Stop Settlement Slush Funds Act would ensure that settlement dollars go to victims’ funds or to the general fund of the Treasury to be appropriated by Congress, which, as Article I of the Constitution requires, holds the power of the purse over funds spent by the federal government,” said Adam Brandon, President, FreedomWorks. “It’s critical that Congress reins in the executive branch and assert its Article I powers, the Stop Settlement Slush Funds Act is a crucial part of this effort." 
"NTU supports the Stop Settlement Slush Funds Act, and applauds Congressman Gooden and Senator Tuberville for working together to protect taxpayers,” said Alex Milliken, Policy and Government Affairs Manager at the National Taxpayers Union. “The practice of diverting billions of settlement dollars out of the hands of victims and toward third-party groups is a dubious practice. Congress should act quickly to put a stop to this agency behavior and prevent the misuse of resources to promote partisan agendas."

The bill will now proceed to the Senate for consideration.

Read the full text here.