Gifts are a great way to show someone you care. They can be a tangible gift, or something intangible. Some gifts may even make you feel good. It’s up to you to determine what makes the best gift for your recipient.
A good rule of thumb is to avoid the temptation of accepting a gift that doesn’t make you feel good. Although gifts are meant to be appreciated and valued, there are times when a gift may cause hurt feelings.
For instance, if a constituent wants to give you two wine glasses for $40, it isn’t wise to take them. Or, on the other hand, you might want to accept a fruit basket. In other words, do your research before you buy the trinket.
You’re probably familiar with the ‘house rule’ in Congress. This is a regulation pertaining to gifts that all House members, as well as their staff and aides, must follow. All House offices are governed by this rule, regardless of whether the office is located in Washington DC, San Francisco, or another city. Similarly, the House also has a set of guidelines for accepting gifts from registered federal lobbyists and other individuals with whom members work.
The house rule also includes a number of ‘best practices’ that should help you avoid common pitfalls. For example, if you’re trying to get an internship at the House of Representatives, you shouldn’t accept a necktie from your best friend if it was meant for display in your official office. Another example would be if you’re a resident commissioner of Puerto Rico.
There’s also the House Gift Rule, which applies to every member of the House, and to everyone who receives disbursed pay from the Chief Administrative Officer. As a result, if you’re in Congress, you can expect a variety of different types of gifts.
One of the more popular and interesting gifts that you might be able to enjoy is a family pass to a local amusement park or to a relaxing class at the gym. These may not be the most expensive gifts that you’ll ever receive, but they’re a nice gesture to your family. And if you’re not quite the DIY type, you can always hire a professional to do the task for you.
Another one of the most popular types of gifts is the ‘favorite’, a gift that you get from your employer or a long-time friend. For instance, if you’re a congressional employee, you might enjoy an in-office pizza night. But if you’re a constituent, you might enjoy a similar meal.
Whether you’re looking to celebrate a birthday, an anniversary, or just a plain old fashioned holiday, a thoughtful gift is the way to go. By giving something that you thought about and actually enjoyed, you’re showing your loved ones that you appreciate them.
Of course, there are many more ‘best practices’ that you can follow. In addition to the House rule, you should keep in mind that there are other laws that govern the way you interact with the public. Take advantage of the House’s official calendar and schedule time to check out the other events taking place around town.