Here’s a headline you won’t see every day: momentum to reform Congress is growing on Capitol Hill.
Over the last few weeks, more and more members of Congress are calling for the creation of a Joint Committee on the Organization of Congress. This panel would develop vital recommendations for the institution to reform itself from within, by adopting practices and policies that engender progress on legislation critical to the nation – rather than partisan gridlock.
In the latest development, this month, the House Rules Committee’s Subcommittee on Rules and Organization held a hearing where they solicited lawmakers’ ideas for reforms in the next Congress, which begins in January 2018. Members of Congress from both sides of the aisle—including Ranking Member Rep. Jim McGovern (D-MA) and Representatives Darin LaHood (R-IL), Dan Lipinski (D-IL), Ami Bera (D-CA), Derek Kilmer (D-WA), and John Sarbanes (D-MD)—urged the creation of the Joint Committee as a means to revitalize Congress.
But that’s not the only positive sign of Congress’s growing desire to change the way it conducts its business. With recent headway on spending bills to keep government running, as well as the potential for recommendations this fall from the committee that’s been tasked with suggesting reforms to the budget and appropriations process, there’s a launching pad for this essential good work to expand into broader institutional reforms.
We can build on this momentum and make a Congress of Tomorrow a reality! But this congressional overhaul requires both chambers of Congress to work together, and for all of us to insist that they do. That’s why now, more than ever, it’s urgent to ask your representative to join the growing number of lawmakers in Washington calling for the creation of this vital committee.