Few Americans think positively of Congress. In recent decades, the First Branch's approval rating has plummeted, and a majority of the country believes that the "people's branch" is out of touch with the people. Political gridlock, a broken budget process, and recent shutdowns certainly don't help.
From the inside, the institution doesn't shine any brighter, with high staff turnover, dwindling policy expertise, and frustrated Members becoming the new normal. In 2019, Congress acknowledged its own need for improvement, and created a temporary select committee in the House focused exclusively on the operational modernization of the body.
Made up of twelve representatives — half Democrats, half Republicans, at all levels of senority and from regions across America — the Select Committee held over fifteen hearings and passed nearly one hundred specific, action-focused recommendations to improve legislative work.
Upon approving their final report, the Members of the Select Committee not only laid a foundation but shared a call to action for the next Congress, class of Members, staff, and non-governmental organizations to pick up the torch.
Our work has just begun.