Is there any rule making representatives, senators, and others purposefully avoid cursing while in the legislature building?
[While the following applies to the House, it should be no different for the Senate.]
No, there is no specific rule regarding words to be avoided. "Members have been cautioned against the use of vulgarity or profanity in debate." 1
"The context of the debate itself must be considered in determining whether the words objected to constitute disorderly criticism or do in fact fall within the boundaries of appropriate parliamentary discourse." 2
Given the above, it would have been rather difficult for Representatives to debate H.R.3687 without the possibility of using some of the words listed in the resolution. As it happened, the bill died in committee.
See also the reference to H.R. 3687 in Seven dirty words.
1, 2 HOUSE PRACTICE, 2011, ch. 16, §22, pp 403-404.
§ 22. Disorderly Language
Members have been censured or otherwise disciplined for the use of disorderly words in debate, whether the words were uttered in the House or the Committee of the Whole. Manual § 960; 2 Hinds §§ 1254, 1259, 1305; 6 Cannon § 236. A Member may likewise be disciplined for the insertion of disorderly words in the Congressional Record. 6 Cannon § 236. Members have been cautioned against the use of vulgarity or profanity in debate. Manual § 945. The Chair may call to order a Member engaging in or tending toward personalities in debate or for a verbal outburst following the expiration of time for debate. Manual §§ 361, 622. For a discussion of critical references to Members, see § 37, infra.
Remarks in debate have been the subject of a resolution collaterally raising a question of the privileges of the House, such resolution alleging that the remarks brought discredit upon the House and proposing that the Member in question be censured. 110-1, Oct. 23, 2007, p 27966; see also QUESTIONS OF PRIVILEGE.
The context of the debate itself must be considered in determining whether the words objected to constitute disorderly criticism or do in fact fall within the boundaries of appropriate parliamentary discourse. The present-day meaning of language, the tone and intent of the Member speaking, and the subject of the remarks, must all be taken into account by the Speaker. There have been instances in which the same or similar word has on one occasion been ruled permissible and on another ruled unparliamentary. Thus the word ‘‘damn’’ has been ruled out of order, whereas ‘‘damnable’’ has been permitted. Deschler-Brown Ch 29 § 43.