November 6, 2019

The Honorable Nancy Pelosi

Speaker of the House

United States House of Representatives

1236 Longworth H.O.B.

Washington, D.C. 20515

The Honorable Kevin McCarthy

Republican Leader

United States House of Representatives

2468 Rayburn House Office Building

Washington, D.C. 20515

Dear Speaker Pelosi and Leader McCarthy:

We write to express our support for the extension of the House Select Committee on the Modernization of Congress through the second session of the 116th Congress.

We are a diverse mix of individuals and organizations with decades of experience in congressional operations, procedure, technology, and public policy. We thank you both for your leadership in creating the Select Committee, which had the support of an overwhelming majority of legislators on both sides of the aisle. We strongly urge you to extend the Select Committee’s mandate for one additional year, so that it may continue its important work to drive the conversation on modernizing and improving our first branch of government.

The Select Committee, in fulfilling its mandate to study and report on reforms that would promote a more modern and efficient Congress, has made significant progress within a short span of time. It has held nearly a dozen hearings and produced 29 unanimous, bipartisan recommendations to improve House technology, transparency, staff diversity and retention, accessibility and constituent engagement. In doing so, the Select Committee has reinforced and added to the already significant steps taken by the Committees on Rules, House Administration, and Appropriations to improve the institution.

These efforts to modernize Congress are an excellent start, but more work is needed to ensure a responsive, modern and accountable legislature. While other institutional challenges may dominate the headlines, the Select Committee is well-positioned to drive reforms that will benefit Congress and the American people into the future.  Moreover, our interactions with dozens of members on both sides of the aisle indicate a wide spectrum of the House supports and is encouraged by the Committee’s work.

We thank you for your leadership and urge bipartisan agreement to extend the Select Committee on the Modernization of Congress.


American Library Association

Bipartisan Policy Center Action

College to Congress

Congressional Institute

Demand Progress

Democracy Fund Voice

Government Accountability Project

Issue One

Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies

Lincoln Network


Partnership for Public Service


R Street Institute

Rebuild Congress Initiative

cc:     Hon. Steny Hoyer, House Majority Leader

Hon. Steve Scalise, House Minority Whip

Hon. Jim McGovern, Chairman, House Committee on Rules

Hon. Tom Cole, Ranking Member, House Committee on Rules

Hon. Zoe Lofgren, Chairperson, Committee on House Administration

Hon. Rodney Davis, Ranking Member, Committee on House Administration

Hon. Derek Kilmer, Chair, Select Committee on the Modernization of Congress

Hon. Tom Graves, Vice Chair, Select Committee on the Modernization of Congress