Chairman Crowley’s Bipartisan Civil Asset Forfeiture Reform Bill Passes House of Representatives

September 5, 2017
Press Release

(Washington, DC)  –  Today, Rep. Joe Crowley (D-Queens, the Bronx), Chairman of the House Democratic Caucus, announced that the House of Representatives unanimously passed the Clyde-Hirsch-Sowers RESPECT Act (H.R. 1843), bipartisan legislation led by Crowley and Rep. Peter J. Roskam (R-IL) that will protect taxpayers from having their money wrongfully seized by the government. 
 
“Civil asset forfeiture started as a tool to combat criminal activity but it has morphed into a complex process that can unfairly entangle innocent Americans,” said Chairman Crowley. “There is no question the process is flawed and need of reform. That’s why I’m proud to partner with Congressman Roskam to pass this critical legislation.”

“Today we took a big step toward delivering justice for victims of IRS abuse,” said Congressman Roskam. “It’s clear to everyone involved that the IRS and DOJ abused their authority and took money from people who did nothing wrong. With today’s legislation, we’re making sure they can never do it again. I want to thank the Clyde, Hirsch, Sowers, and Taylor families for their bravery and willingness to share their stories in the hopes of preventing future injustice. I appreciate the support of Ranking Member John Lewis and Congressman Joe Crowley on this bipartisan bill. I’m glad we can finally put this ugly chapter to rest.”

The House of Representatives passed the Crowley-Roskam bill in 2016, but the legislation did not receive a vote in the Senate before the session of Congress expired. With today’s passage, the bill will now head to the Senate for consideration.