Ten Principles for Reforming the Rules of the House of Representatives

The following recommendations to reform the rules of the House of Representatives will do much to restore the capacity, incentives, and capability of representatives to fulfill their roles as legislators.

Ten Principles for Reforming the Rules of the House of Representatives

1. The House must reimagine the chamber floor as a forum for open, informed debate on competing visions for America.

2. The House must reimagine committees as a place where open, informed debate on legislative proposals and government activities takes place, and where committee members are fully empowered and encouraged to participate on an equal footing in service of the best interests of the entire chamber.

3. Members of the House must be supported in their efforts to self-organize around shared interests and be able to access information that belongs to the House and relates to their interests.

4. The House must recruit, hire, promote, empower, protect, and retain expert staff who have a diversity of skills, backgrounds, and expertise.

5. House ethics enforcement and oversight must focus on preventing the emergence of ethical conflicts and promptly addressing conflicts before they become problems for the institution.

6. House support offices and agencies, and data concerning House activities, must be transparent, support the work of the full House, and be responsive to the will of the House.

7. House technology must be modernized to support the oversight, legislative, and constituent service responsibilities of members, committees, support offices, and leadership.

8. Electronic information touching members and staff in whatever capacity, as well as committees, leadership, and support offices and agencies, must be secure from unwanted access.

9. Transitions in membership of the House must not adversely impact constituent services.

10.The House must continuously renew itself and study new approaches to its operations.