In an unprecedented letter to all congressional candidates in both parties, more than 130 former members of Congress said it’s time to halt “this sorry state of affairs” and start to “focus on problem solving.”…

They urge current members to show “decency and respect toward opponents” and engage in truthfulness and good-faith debate and end personal attacks — in both campaigns and their legislative work…

The letter resulted from more than three months of discussions among the former members who signed the letter. The public is “hugely perplexed and dismayed” about the problems facing the nation, Skaggs said. And he hopes the initiative will be a catalyst for current and would-be lawmakers to know and respect one another.