Idle hands are the devil’s playthings: That’s the message Mark had for members of the Select Committee on the Modernization of Congress at a private roundtable discussion on civility on Wednesday, September 29. The Speaker dictates too much of the legislation that the House considers and Members are not allowed to amend legislation like they should be. Allowing Members of Congress to do their jobs—authorize programs, offer amendments on the Floor, have real debates—is the key to increasing civility in Congress. The Select Committee on the Modernization of Congress, which has made over 100 recommendations since it was created in 2019, has shown that it’s still possible to do important, bipartisan work even in a polarized political culture. Congress should build on their success by creating a new Joint Committee on the Organization of Congress to address issues that affect the entire Legislative Branch, Strand told the committee.

For Mark’s remarks as prepared for delivery, click here.