Wyoming Reps: “Let’s Hug It Out”

While Indiana’s House of Reps has seen more drama and strife this year than "Real Housewives of Putnam County" (or whatever it’s called), Wyoming takes a much different approach. State Legislatures magazine explains how the Equality State’s reps "hug it out" before each day of legislation.

Mind you, when I worked on a newspaper in Wyoming, I never felt this kind of love from angry readers. Anyhow, here’s the glorious message of brother/sisterhood:

Wyoming representatives know how to start the day off right. Every morning right after the roll call, opening prayer and Pledge of Allegiance, Republicans and Democrats shake hands and even sometimes give each other hugs and backslaps.

“Basically, everybody’s just saying, ‘Have a good day,’” Rep. Pat Childers told the Associated Press.

This isn’t new to the Wyoming House. The 60 lawmakers have been doing it since 2001, although no one seems to be sure exactly why.

It’s a reminder, Rep. Bernadine Craft says, that “we’re all here really for the same purpose. And even though we disagree on many of the issues … we really are citizens of Wyoming trying to do the best we can.”

The practice hasn’t caught on yet in the Senate.