Congressional Institute President Mark Strand recently sent a letter to U.S. House offices asking them to support the formation of a Joint Committee on the Organization of Congress. Go here to learn more about a Joint Committee.
Dear Chiefs of Staff and Legislative Directors,
Recently, Reps. Darin LaHood and Dan Lipinski sent a Dear Colleague asking for support for a resolution to form a Joint Committee on the Organization of Congress, which would recommend the kinds of reforms that will put Congress back to work. The Congressional Institute has been advocating for a Joint Committee that has the authority to propose meaningful revisions to the rules, procedures and structures of Congress. The Institute has listed a number of congressional reform concepts that will help fix Congress’ problems. Research commissioned by the Congressional Institute provides insight into why Americans no longer believe Congress is accountable. Strikingly, less than 1 in 5 voters believe their voices are being heard.
The American public’s dissatisfaction with Congress has reached historic lows, and most people don’t think that any good work is being done here. Each time you return home to your districts, you no doubt hear the complaints that Congress is not responsive to voters, instead voting only to toe the party line. As hard as you work to make a significant difference for you constituents, partisanship stymies even the most-needed pieces of legislation. The fight in the Senate over the funding to combat Zika is the latest example of what’s gone wrong in Congress.
Over the last century, Congress has been so dysfunctional that it has found it necessary to institute transformational reforms that move it beyond partisanship and back into a position to be effective. Reforms have ranged from reforming the budget process to allowing committees to hire dedicated staff.
The mission of the Congressional Institute is to help Members of Congress better serve their constituents and to help constituents better understand the operations of Congress. The formation of a Joint Committee will accomplish both of these goals for the betterment of our nation. The American public deserve better than the partisanship that is preventing the country from moving forward. On behalf of the Congressional Institute, I encourage you to support the formation of a Joint Committee on the Organization of Congress.
Mark Strand, President
The Congressional Institute
Founded in 1987, the Congressional Institute is a not-for-profit corporation dedicated to helping Members of Congress better serve their constituents and helping their constituents better understand the operations of the national legislature. The Institute sponsors major conferences for the benefit of Members of the U.S. Congress as well as a number of smaller gatherings, all devoted to an examination of important policy issues and strategic planning. The Institute also conducts important research projects consistent with its mission, develops resources such as a House Floor Procedures Manual and sponsors Oxford-style bipartisan Congressional debates.