In 2017, a report on civility in America, found that incivility has reached “crisis levels” in our country. Nine out of 10 Americans agree that incivility leads to intimidation, threats, harassment, discrimination, violence, and cyberbullying. A majority of Americans believe that incivility in our politics encourages general incivility in society and deters citizens from engaging in public service.
In light of this challenge, one of my first actions in Congress was pledging a “Commitment to Civility”, recognizing the importance of civility in our public discourse. As public officials, we have a responsibility to lead by example, fostering more civility, and starting in the halls of Congress. Words matter, how we treat each other matters – we can disagree without being disagreeable. I am proud that what started as a freshman class initiative has grown to more than 120 members signing the pledge.
Click here to view the Commitment to Civility. Click here to see who has signed the pledge.
Furthering this commitment, I joined with my colleague Mike Johnson, a Republican from Louisiana, who spearheaded the Commitment to Civility, to launch the Honor and Civility Caucus. This bipartisan group aims to uphold and promote the ideals of civility and statesmanship and to restore trust and confidence in America’s political institutions.
We also joined together to introduce bipartisan legislation designating a National Day of Civility, an annual observance on July 12th, inspired by the language of Matthew 7:12, which reads: "So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you.” Click here to read more about our National Day of Civility initiative in our joint op-ed in The Hill.
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