“Quick fix for Congress: Speak English!”

In his new book “A Better Congress: Change the rules, change the results,” Joseph Gibson proposes a A Better Congress: Change the Rules, Change the Results: A Modest Proposal - Citizen's Guide to Legislative Reformnovel idea, why don’t members of Congress use plain English when they write legislation. “If bills were drafted in clearer language, perhaps more members would read and understand them. If the bills then became law, the public might understand them better as well. Of the 460 public laws passed during 2007-08, seventeen were technical corrections bills that fixed drafting mistakes in prior laws — that Congress needed to pass so many of these bills illustrates the problems that complexity introduces.”
. . .
Gibson has a bunch of other useful suggestions for improvement but given Congress’ tendency to make things more, not less, complicated, what are the odds they’ll take his advice? Perhaps as a Christmas gift each member should get his book as a stocking stuffer.

Quick fix for Congress: Speak English!” by Abby Wisse Schachter, New York Post, December 15, 2010

Echoes this suggestion from a reader:

“Makes a great gift for your representatives in Congress!”

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