Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) poked fun at the new Senate dress code Monday, joking that she planned to wear a bathing suit on the Senate floor.
“I plan to wear a bikini tomorrow to the Senate floor,” Collins joked to reporters.
Majority Leader Chuck Schumer announced the relaxation of the dress code earlier this week, saying that senators can now wear whatever they want to on the floor while staffers and outside visitors need to adhere to the business attire policy.
“Senators are able to choose what they wear on the Senate floor. I will continue to wear a suit,” Schumer said in a statement shared with The Hill on the change.
Collins joined a number of her conservative colleagues who criticized the new Senate dress code for being too lax and for lowering the standards. Many conservatives took aim at Sen. John Fetterman (D-Penn.) over the dress code, accusing Schumer of catering to the Pennsylvania Democrat, who can be frequently spotted wearing a hoodie and gym shorts.
“I think there is a certain dignity that we should be maintaining in the Senate, and to do away with the dress code, to me, debases the institution,” Collins said in comments reported by NBC.
Collins’ remarks were echoed by other Republicans, including GOP presidential candidate and Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, who said the Senate was “dumbing down” the dress code for Fetterman.
“And I think the fact that the Senate changed the rules to accommodate that I think speaks very poorly to how they consider that,” DeSantis said. “Look, we need to be lifting up our standards in this country, not dumbing down our standards in this country. This is an example why.”
The Associated Press contributed.