Taking Back America!
What is the “real” answer to the problems we face with our politicians and their lack of ability to control spending, deal with the massive debt and do the right thing? Term Limits. Simple as that.
When politicians only worry about getting re-elected they can’t get themselves to do what is right. Instead, they gauge everything on what they feel they need to do to get re-elected. Career politicians doom this country to more of the same until something catastrophic happens. We don’t want to go down that road.
A Fox News poll in 2010 showed that on average only 22% of people approve of the job congress is doing. It also showed that 78% of Americans support imposing congressional term limits. This sentiment is not new. So why do term limits never happen? Simply because the very people deciding this debate are the people who it directly impacts…the current members of Congress.
Back in 1994 the Republicans took control of the House by promoting the “Contract with America”. That document called for imposing term limits on Congress and while the Republicans did bring the measure to an early vote after taking power it failed to pass the House by only 23 votes. And guess what? While 189 Republicans voted for it, 40 Republicans voted against it! Only 38 Democrats voted it for it.
2011 has seen another attempt to enact term limits legislation with the introduction of S.J.Res. 11 by Senator Jim Demint (R-SC) which states “A joint resolution proposing an amendment to the Constitution of the United States relative to limiting the number of terms that a Member of Congress may serve to 3 in the House of Representatives and 2 in the Senate.” This joint resolution is the first step in the process and requires a two-thirds vote in the House and Senate and then 37 states must pass the measure.
So why can term limits be the answer? Consider these positions…(or watch the video below)
1) The vast majority of Americans support term limits.
2) Term limits promote the concept of “Citizen Legislators” which is what the Founding Fathers had in mind.
3) Gets rid of “Career Politicians” that make Congress full of lifetime power brokers who have undue control and influence over everything that takes place there.
4) Greatly increases the chance that politicians will vote on what is “right” and not on what will help them get re-elected.
5) Will reduce the amount of wasteful spending as there is less incentive to “bring home the bacon”.
6) Creates an atmosphere of new ideas and fresh thinking to deal with the issues of the day as new members come in on a regular basis.
7) Eliminates the “Good Ole Boy” network by not allowing individuals to establish as huge power base with decades of tenure.
8) Helps get rid of “special interests”.
9) Promotes and creates incentive for new challengers to enter politics when otherwise they may not think they had a chance to actually win because of a strongly entrenched incumbent.
10) Creates more voter participation as people think they actually can make an impact with their vote.
The biggest reason some people claim is a case against terms limits is that it will force the “good ones” out. My response to that is something we used to say when I coached college football, “no one is above the team”. Meaning, there are plenty of other good people out there that can easily be just as good or an improvement over whomever is in the position now. When you “lock in” one person for too long negative things start to happen even if they were doing a good job. Everyone knows power creates corruption.
Another claim is that we already have term limits because any member of Congress can be voted out on the next election cycle. But the truth is far different because the incumbent has a huge advantage based on the amount of money they can raise over a new comer.
There are many more reasons for term limits and I invite you to comment on them.