Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) has abolished the Senate floor’s professional attire dress code, a move that comes several months after Senator John Fetterman faced criticism for wearing a hoodie.
Schumer discreetly instructed the Senate’s Sergeant at Arms to cease enforcing the dress code. Historically, the dress code mandated male senators to wear jackets and ties while female senators were instructed to wear dresses or other business suits.
The alteration in policy stems from the controversy surrounding Senator John Fetterman (D-NY) who faced backlash from conservatives for his choice to wear a hoodie, gym shorts, and sneakers in the Senate chamber.
Many viewed his casual fashion choices as disrespectful, with conservative comedian Tim Young tweeting, “John Fetterman’s attire in the Senate perfectly summarizes Democrats’ lack of respect for Americans and our institutions.”
Fetterman dislikes wearing the traditional suit and tie and opted for casual gym clothes instead, especially after returning to Washington following his six-week treatment for clinical depression at Walter Reed National Medical Center.
Fetterman, standing at 6 feet 8 inches tall, had previously circumvented the dress code rule by voting from the entrance of the Democratic cloakroom or the side entrance to the Senate floor, avoiding the main floor itself.
However, Schumer’s recent directive signals a shift in Senate priorities. In a time of chaos and failure, Schumer caters to a disrespectful freshman senator. Schumer boasted about his one accomplishment, “senators are able to choose what they wear on the Senate floor.”
A grateful nation gives thanks that Schumer himself remains committed to wearing a traditional suit and tie rather than skinny jeans and a sleeveless tee shirt.
The new dress code will take effect this week. Notably, it only pertains to senators and does not extend to staff members, who will still be required to adhere to professional work-appropriate clothing standards.
The Senate dress code has been modified in the past. About five years ago, the dress code was amended to allow female senators to wear sleeveless dresses or shirts, providing greater flexibility in their attire choices. This change was made to accommodate the preferences of female senators and reflect evolving fashion norms.
Prior Senate rule modifications were aimed at personal safety, such as proxy and remote voting during the COVID-19 pandemic. Others include enhanced accessibility for Senators with disabilities, such as ramps, so they could perform their Senate duties.
But this marks the first time the rules have been bent to accommodate one senator’s preference for an unprofessional appearance in one of the highest offices in the nation.
Our nation remains unified by one common dread – the mere thought of Jerry Nadler donning a speedo or Nancy Pelosi casting her vote in short shorts is enough to send chills down the spines of all Americans.