West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin is reportedly seeking a reversal of “The Fetterman Rule,” a recently enacted relaxed dress code for lawmakers in the Senate.
Earlier this week, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer directed the sergeant-at-arms to stop enforcing the Senate’s previous formal dress code.
The Senate’s dress code change has since been dubbed “The Fetterman Rule” after Pennsylvania Senator John Fetterman, who has seldom appeared in formal suit and tie, opting instead to wear a loose-fitting hoodie or Dickie’s button-down shirt and gym shorts.
The West Virginia senator was reportedly circulating a proposal to reverse Schumer’s decision which would require senators to wear business attire, per The Hill.
“Next week, Senator Manchin intends to file a bipartisan resolution to ensure the Senate dress code remains consistent with previous expectations,” one spokesperson for Manchin told reporters on Thursday.
One senator, who has already reportedly signed the proposition, said the language defines what the Senate dress code should be.
In the ongoing saga of the Senate dress code, a Manchin spox says, “Next week, Senator Manchin intends to file a bipartisan resolution to ensure the Senate the dress code remains consistent with previous expectations.”
— Frank Thorp V (@frankthorp) September 21, 2023
“The senator in question from Pennsylvania is a personal friend, but I think we need to have standards when it comes to what we’re wearing on the floor of the Senate, and we’re in the process of discussing that right now as to what those standards will be,” Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin told SiriusXM’s The Briefing with Steve Scully.
Durbin insisted the Senate should act on The Fetterman Rule.
Texas Senator John Cornyn referred to Manchin’s proposal as “the coalition of the rational.”
“It’s just ridiculous that we should have to conform the dress code to the lowest common denominator,” Cornyn said.
The Pennsylvania senator’s wardrobe choices were highlighted earlier this week as Fetterman presided over the Senate wearing his loose-fitting Dickie’s shirt and gym shorts.
In a Wednesday X post, Fetterman offered to “save democracy” by wearing a suit in exchange for Republicans compromising with Democrats in the House.
“If those jagoffs in the House stop trying to shut our government down, and fully support Ukraine, then I will save democracy by wearing a suit on the Senate floor next week,” he wrote.
If those jagoffs in the House stop trying to shut our government down, and fully support Ukraine, then I will save democracy by wearing a suit on the Senate floor next week.
— Senator John Fetterman (@SenFettermanPA) September 20, 2023
Earlier this week, the Pennsylvania senator joked about his clothing choices by suggesting he dresses how Florida Governor Ron DeSantis campaigns for the 2024 presidential election.
“Try hoodies,” Fetterman said after sharing a Politico article claiming DeSantis’ campaign was “on life support.”
One shirt available on Fetterman’s store features a series of quotes from critics referring to him as “disgraceful,” “disgusting,” a “revolting slob,” and a “crazy stroke victim.”
Fetterman is also selling a hoodie reading, “I vote in this hoodie.”
Forty-Six Republican senators, led by Florida Senator Rick Scott, signed a letter to the Minority Leader demanding the Senate’s previous formal dress code be reinstated.
“The world watches us on that floor and we must protect the sanctity of that place at all costs,” the letter reads. “Allowing casual clothing on the Senate floor disrespects the institution we serve and the American families we represent.”