Email

The Pros and Cons of Congressional Term Limits

165 | By Shah Gilani

I, for one, believe there is a problem with how America is governed.

I know many of you agree. You voice your frustration to me every week.

It’s not “one” problem. There are many.

Congressional insider trading (still alive and well)… an inability to work together… fiscal irresponsibility… the ridiculous taxpayer-funded benefits and perks our leaders enjoy, while we struggle… highly politicized capital markets… and the financiers and money men our “leaders” are in bed with.

The worst problem of all – or perhaps the reason all of the above is allowed to persist – is the “permanent political class in Washington [that] is able to skirt the rules and laws that apply to the rest of us.” That’s what author Peter Schweizer of “Throw Them All Out” fame – referring to our leaders – said to me when I interviewed him for you in 2011.

So what if there was one “resolution” that, by itself, would set in motion a chain reaction that would fundamentally change how America is governed?

I’d be for it. Better yet, I am for it. It’s here. It’s on the table as of Tuesday.

The idea, introduced in Congress on April 23rd by Rep. Matt Salmon (R-Ariz.), is a proposed amendment to the Constitution to limit how long legislators, Representatives and Senators, get to represent us.

Take a look at H.J. Res. 41…

IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

April 23, 2013


Mr. SALMON (for himself, Mr. SCHWEIKERT, Mr. RICE of South Carolina, Mr. DESANTIS, Mr. BRIDENSTINE, and Mr. PITTENGER) introduced the following joint resolution; which was referred to the Committee on the Judiciary


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.

    Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled (two-thirds of each House concurring therein), That the following article is proposed as an amendment to the Constitution of the United States, which shall be valid to all intents and purposes as part of the Constitution when ratified by the legislatures of three-fourths of the several States within seven years after the date of its submission for ratification:

Article–

    “Section 1. No person who has served 3 terms as a Representative shall be eligible for election to the House of Representatives. For purposes of this section, the election of a person to fill a vacancy in the House of Representatives shall be included as 1 term in determining the number of terms that such person has served as a Representative if the person fills the vacancy for more than 1 year.

    “Section 2. No person who has served 2 terms as a Senator shall be eligible for election or appointment to the Senate. For purposes of this section, the election or appointment of a person to fill a vacancy in the Senate shall be included as 1 term in determining the number of terms that such person has served as a Senator if the person fills the vacancy for more than 3 years.

    “Section 3. No term beginning before the date of the ratification of this article shall be taken into account in determining eligibility for election or appointment under this article.’

Sounds good, right?

Don’t get your hopes up too much.

According to government transparency website www.govtrack.us, there have been 28,537 bills related to “term limits” since 1973. Their prognosis, or probability that the bill will be enacted, is a sincerely disheartening 0%. (Click here to see how they calculated this probability.)

Yes, “throw them all out” may be a tired refrain and one that you’re getting sick of hearing.

But instead of defaulting to our collective cynicism (which is wholly justified) that “this” will never happen, today I want us to discuss the pros and cons of this Resolution.

Personally, I think it could work as a first step to return us to Democracy. It’s pretty simple.

If we limit the tenure of legislators, we theoretically impose on them a time limit in which they have to exercise their efforts to realize the campaign promises they make. They get a couple of tries and they’re out.

If they are successful, they get another shot. Or if there is more work to do on what they’ve started, new candidates would want to promise to finish what voters elected their predecessors to do.

Conversely, voters would replace agents of inaction, self-serving shysters, or ineffectual panderers more quickly, simply because regime change calls for it.

Now, I’m guessing here, but I imagine that this would cause the whole electorate to become more engaged in the issues, the debates, and outcomes, because they would start believing, and eventually know, that change isn’t just possible… it’s the law.

The U.S. Constitution is nothing short of magnificent, in every way. For all it lays down, it also leaves plenty of room for change. Our Founding Fathers knew that the young nation would forever experience growing pains, so instinctively, the Constitution was written to accommodate our evolution from our revolution.

Why shouldn’t our evolution include another revolution?

Let’s exercise our collective voices and march our tens of millions of pairs of boots on the ground to “demonstrate” and vociferously demand the return of the Democracy that’s been stolen from us.

This space, right here, is where I respectfully ask you, us, to start discussing whether we need a new revolution, or whether the status quo is the way to go.

Help me figure this out…

  • What do you think about term limits?
  • What are the pros and cons of term limits vs. the status quo system?
  • Is this an “all or nothing” proposition, or should we consider allowing additional terms if high percentages of voters (popular votes not any of this Electoral College stuff) want a good person back in office?
  • What are the unintended consequences we might face with term limits?

Today there are more than 250,000 of you who read Wall Street Insights & Indictments. That’s an army. Let’s mobilize and be part of the solution, part of the revolution, part of the army to save Democracy.

Be heard!

Shah

165 Responses to The Pros and Cons of Congressional Term Limits

    • Chris Crawley says:

      If the founding fathers had had that attitude we’d all still be wearing “wigs & short trousers”..

    • Mike Nelson says:

      I believe in the idea of term limits that I would work full time to educate people to the harm that is done by the present system of representation that thinks that job preservation is the most important issue of the day! Why else do all Democrats vote alike and all Republicans vote alike(usually on opposite ends of the matter).
      Because they want to fall in line and preserve their “employment” with the power brokers in both the senate and the house. I think that we see plenty examples of lawmakers finishing out their careers and voting their hearts and common sense instead as they are told!!!!!!! I am fired up!!!! MIke

      • Deborah says:

        It is about time that we demand term limits. I also believe that all our elected officials should have the same health care that they are pushing on us. The ones who pay their benefits for life.

      • tom says:

        The down side to term limits are Senators and members of congress who really try to do a good job dictated by conscience. A perfect example is Senator Dr. Tom Coburn from Oklahome. In my opinion he is by far the finest Senator we have and he is term limiting himself in 2016 because he believes in term limits. If you want to learn how to easily balance the budget look at Dr. Coburns web site.
        Second point is the ignorance and apathy of the electorate. The number one reason overwhelming for voting for a politician is name recognition and then party affiliation. Very few people take the time to research their political leaders voting records which tells you everything you need to know about your elected officials. Until the country actually cares to do the homework we will always have a large percentage of representatives and Senators who don’t represent us.
        If you want to make change then we the people MUST contact our leaders via emai, fax, telegram or letter and letters are the most influential.

        • Faith La Riviere says:

          I don’t know about Tom Coburn but I sure do agree about the ignorance of the electorate. But considering the number of them who cannot speak or write proper English, the language of this country, I am not surprised and am continually appalled at the basis upon which people choose their selections at the voting booth. And now many school districts are eliminating the teaching of cursive, the end result of which will be that people in this country will no longer even be able to sign their signature. The un-educating of America. No civics, no real history, no writing…

        • Wayne says:

          Tom, I agree that there are too many voters who are not informed about how their Congresspeople represent them and there are too many voters who just follow the “party line”. That is why I advocate a People’s Lobby that would work to define the issues and keep voters more informed via a People’s Lobby website.

      • Greg Obal says:

        Davidzep: With all due respect, get your own dayum links! This is one of the problems with our country today. Everybody sits here online and says, “yeah, I can back that!” – and then they wait for everyone ELSE to actually DO SOMETHING CONCRETE! I was like this until about 3 years ago (figure it out….lol) and since then I’ve become an emailer, phone caller, and SNAIL mailer (believe it or not many of them pay more attention to these) to the id-jets in DC and here in my district/state. It works!! So, PLEASE – DO SOMETHING…. or nothing will ever get done. And the USA idea will be gone.

        @ George Oram: You sir, and all those like you are complicit in the demise and ominous future of the USA. Wow! Sad!

        • Faith La Riviere says:

          Yup….snail mail gets more attention than email….it sends up a signal that someone who has been educated has sat down and written a real letter with real thoughts.

      • Arem says:

        Google “contact senator” and you’ll get all the LINKS you want/need to contact your own Senators — and, similarly, your U.S. Representative. Then BOOKMARK those sites, as I do. This is no-brainer s-i-m-p-l-e, Davidzep . . .

    • Bob Lamarre says:

      bob,
      I have a better idea than term limits. There is an upcoming party called the TVP Party. Go to website http://www.tvpnc.org and see what they are offering to everyone. You won’t be disappointed I can guanrantee you that!

    • Jim C. says:

      It’s the only way our government will survive at this point. It is clearly run by individuals corrupted by longstanding power. It must change or it will be then end of itself.

    • DOT says:

      Term limits might not be the answer whereas local statutes might. Google for this video on Upworthy.com as I’m unable to post links.

      “The Horrifying Truth About Elections In The United States”

    • Huck Finn says:

      Well now, you expect these poltroons to voluntarily give up their solid gold protected criminal enterprise and actually have to labor to support their life in the lap of luxury? Have at it, but don’t bother me none ’bout it – I’m goin’ fishin’.

    • mor says:

      Many years ago a state had representatives elected from districts but it had one representative at large run. Since redistricting is rarely balanced; let’s consider something similar. On a rotating basis, let some representatives run from their district and let some run for an at large seat. Change the at large districts every third cycle. This would not have any value in states with very few reps but in larger states, it could have an impact.

  1. Felix says:

    “Throw em all out” sounds GREAT to me, maybe the “Pauls” would be the exceptions. This amendment also sounds good ,but it
    would never make it. ! I just read from the Tea Party that because congress has REALIZED the HIGH
    EXPENSE to themselves, they want to
    OPT OUT of Obamacare for congress members! This is the kind
    of CRAP we are all having to put up with. VOTERS need to get their heads out of the sand.

  2. eric taylor says:

    Term limitations for Congress is interesting, and perhaps Federal representatives should be thrown up for a national vote instead, after one, or two terms, as the popular majority opinion is often not supported by many local politicians, on issues as diverse as gun control, single payer health care, many civil rights issues, and so on, that have not been respected by our ideologically biased representatives, who do not really believe in Democracy!

  3. Robert H. Forbes says:

    It SHOULD be the law,but,fat chance those in Washington will vote to approve it; enough votes to pass.

  4. Darryl Dobin says:

    We can no longer accept the absurdity of the current situation in DC. We must take some action, and while term limits is only one part of the solution, it can at least keep the 20-30 year “owned” seats off the table. I fully understand the “will of the people” argument that will quickly be used by the hangers-on, but with the completely jerry-rigged districts, they shouldn’t be too concerned that someone with equal or close interests and views will follow. Let’s get something done to fix this mess!

  5. Larry Lance says:

    I believe term limits are the only thing that can get us back to a “citizen congress” instead of the Washington “Ruling Class”. Dr. Tom Coburn is my hero!

    • Greg Obal says:

      Unfortunately, Sen. Coburn is along the lines of an “Obama” pol. – talks a lot, gets a lot of media attention, … and does little or nothing (or worse, strays from the course). Most of his intentions seem positive to conservatives – but “the road to hail is paved with good intentions” as they say.

      • Mary E says:

        You should read Tom Coburn’s book he wrote. I did. Yes, he talks a lot, but, unfortunately, his fellow senators don’t want to hear his solutions. When no one else will support a senator’s ideas, then, yes, “little or nothings” gets done. I would vote for him in a heart beat, but he isn’t from my state.

  6. Claire B says:

    I agree that we should have limited terms in Congress and Senate; however, an exception, by popular vote of the people would allow an exceptionally productive candidate to be voted in for extra term(s). I believe that the pros would definitely outweigh the cons. It would certainly decrease the level of government corruption to hold all candidates accountable to a higher standard of behavior!

  7. Phil Iversen says:

    I agree we should at least try to throw the bums out of office after a limited time, but we all know they won’t go for it as absolute power corrupts absolutely. The later Senator Byrd from West Virginia was in office for over 50 years and just think of all the good people from his state that could have done wonderous things for our nation. Ban lobbyists and only call them when information is needed. If they don’t go willing then let’s all march on Washington with pitchforks and torches and make them go! :)

  8. Christopher Wells says:

    Shah, While we are at it let’s start a movement to repeal the 17th amendment as well. States would then appoint Senators as the Constitution was originally written. Restores another check and balance against a run away Federal Government.

  9. Robert Fournier says:

    I FULLY SUPPORT SENATE AND CONGRESSIONAL TERM LIMITS. OLD TIMERS HAVE TOO MUCH CLOUT, AND THEY ARE IGNORANT OF THE CITIZENRY’S ACTUAL LIVING CONDITIONS. BOTH ORGANIZATIONS ARE BASICALLY DEAD-LOCKED, AND WHAT THEY DO PASS AS NEW LAWS, ARE OFTEN RIDICULOUS TO THE AVERAGE American CITIZEN.

  10. eileen lepera says:

    they’ve got the power and they’re not going to let go of it w/out a fight – witness the 93% of congress/senate who took bribe money from NRA – they do it openly and transparently – no longer caring if the people know or not. It is a bad turn of events for our country. The leadership is rotten to the core

  11. Ravi says:

    Term limits are a good idea. 3 terms for a congress person, 2 for a senator and 2 for a President.

    They should not be allowed to create laws that they are exempt from.
    They should not have the power to set their own pay scales.
    Reduce the power of lobbying.

    I could go on and on.

  12. greg wood says:

    too little too late anyway… better to run away and live to fight another day.. i am planning to remove my family and as much of my resources as i can from the usa as soon as we can get it done.

  13. Thomas says:

    Great idea Shaw,

    We currently have term limits in the form of elections, however I still can’t get over watching the video of the congressional hearing wherein the hacker testified that he wrote the fix (bug) that is in place to make any candidate win election by 51% of the vote…gee, that’s how much Obama won by in 2012, hhhmmmm?

    That said, it’s time for term limits. It’s the only way to stop the corruption used to always get re-elected. We should also do away with the electoral college altogether and go back to paper ballots.

    I think the proposed amendment should also state that an elected official who has met his/her term limit cannot run for office in the other branch, i.e. moving from the house to the senate, etc.

    The biggest point I’d like to make is that we don’t want a “democracy” in this country. Our forefathers created a “republic” with laws that were meant to be followed by everyone, including politicians. A democracy is mob rule and it leads to tyranny. Just look at labor unions. The mob votes in the union leaders and they become tyrannical rulers over the mob, ignoring the by-laws of the union who put them in power.

    The same is happening in our current administration. Our democracy has created a tyrannical government that imposes its will on the citizens. It just doesn’t work when anyone is held above the law. Remember too big to fail, too big to jail?

    By the way…doesn’t tyranny usually result in civil war? Oh yeah, only in countries who’s citizens haven’t had their ability to defend themselves taken away…

  14. Maureen Collins says:

    Just so you know- I am a precinct central committee member, affiliated with two tea parties, working with the Heritage Foundation and have signed up with wildbillforamerica’s tea teams. So you know where I stand. Looking at our situation for some time, and from several different angles, I can tell you what I know the basic, bottom line problem is: the American people became lazy and abdicated their responsibility to check out people running for office, and allowed them to get away with murder (literally) with no accountability or repercussions for their actions. So those who all along wanted to fundamentally change our nation into a socialist/communist hell have gone a long way toward achieving that goal. It seems that finally more people are waking up to what is happening. And what must be done is that the people in office must again become answerable for their actions, and that we must hold them accountable with swift and sure consequences if they do not. So if you want to organize a massive, unprecedented march on these usurpers, count me in. The crimes committed by the obama administration are unprecedented. There is great justification for having true law enforcement officials march into Washington and arresting most everyone there for treason. The constant assault on our freedoms will not cease until those responsible are removed and indicted. Come on, people- since when did Americans become such wusses? Our founding fathers pledged their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor to found this nation based on liberty and Judaeo-Christian principles. We only started this failure when those were abandoned. Rise up! Become a real American once again, and get in the fight to regain our greatness.

    • 48ozhalfgallons says:

      Judeo-Christians are either now in the minority or are not voting; majority of Catholics and Jews voting democratic notwithstanding. Apparently, from voting trends, the founding principles are no longer perceived as relevant. The government of white men is passing away.

    • Deborah says:

      Amen. I thought that as Americans we were to defend and protect our constitiution, However, very few in Washington even knows that it is there let alone know what it means,

    • robert moore says:

      I believe a “peoples” tribunal is in order to take action against this white collar criminal activity in D C. Why does the FED have power to steal the wealth of the nation with out any recourse? What Wash. doesn’t know is we (the people) have them surrounded.

  15. Kitty Bel says:

    My proposal to go back to democracy in this country”
    stop the revolving door!!!!! Let them serve as many terms as they may, but stop the revolving door.
    They should not receive better benefits than their constituents
    They should put real time at work,
    reverse the supreme court decision in citizens united
    and keep religion and politics separated, Hell is going to be quite crowded when I get there, with these bible wielding maniacs!

    • danny says:

      Kitty, would you call virtually everyone of the founders of our nation, our Constitution “bible wielding maniacs”? Have you ever taken time to go to our Nations capiitol and count the number of times that the word “GOD” they used in all their writings, and their monuments? if you chose not to believe in God, that is your choice, but don’t be so selfriteous to insinuate that those that do believe in god are “maniacs” By the way, I have not been to church in a long time. I am not a “thumper”, but there is a God.

  16. Larry Lindenberg says:

    Maybe this is an idea whose time has come. Lets hope so. Too bad we don’t have citizen inititives at the Federal level.

  17. Dave Webb says:

    Belling the Cat. That is what you are really talking about.
    Just exactly who puts the bell on the cat?
    I disagree about term limits. I think it should have the word “consecutive terms” in there somewhere to protect the rights of people to get elected.
    That would provide them ammunition to go get their jobs back after one term out of office.
    We have a talent problem. And we have a problem with laws that Congress is exempt from. Those are separate issues. I feel that all laws should apply to all people. So if a congress is willing to make themselves an exemption then the law is no good for anyone.

  18. Bob Opitz says:

    Shah,

    I couldn’t agree more!

    That said, I also agree with George Oram in that it will never happen because they “enjoy the free lunch”.

    I should also mention that I got into a real argument with Senator Max Baucus about it several years ago. After a number of messages from staffers, he finally addressed a letter directly to me in which he claimed that term limits had been deemed illegal by the Constitution according to the SCOTUS.

    Needless to say, I really took issue with that and received no more responses from him on that subject, even though I wrote him several times sending the correspondence via facsimile transmission. I even called and never got through to him nor did I receive a call back.

    Big surprise huh.

    Bob Opitz

  19. Dan Castro says:

    After Term Limits we need to tackle getting rid of their special retirement and medical programs and let them deal the mess they’ve created for the average American. The entire Seniority System would have to be reinvented.

  20. Troy DiCostanzo says:

    Politicians will never behave in the interests of the people as long as they are seeking reelection. Term limits are necessary. Yes, they come with a cost, but the current system is not working. This is a necessary first step.

  21. Tim says:

    I love your passion, but I have to disagree. One of the reasons I did not vote for President Obama is that I felt he did not have the experience needed to do the job. I think experience is a valuable requirement for leadership and governance. To bar our most experienced leaders from office would be a foolish mistake, in my opinion.
    However, I do agree that we need to create a system that rewards governance over the ability to get elected.

  22. Jarhead4life says:

    YES we absolutely need term limits. With elections costing millions & millions of dollars, they are now controlled by the rich & powerful, not by the average citizen. Term limits will break the stranglehold that keeps good things from getting done and put an end to the profiteering of the powerful. Yes those in power will fight this to the end. Lastly the bill should also include anyone currently in office.

  23. Douglas Asbury says:

    In the proposed system, someone who served the maximum 6 years as a representative could theoretically go on to serve 12 years as a senator, which would make good use of the person’s experience in the legislative branch, especially if the person was a wise legislator who could get things done. Obviously, also, the person could misuse those positions for 18 years if he or she were an effective fund-raiser who knew just how to pander to special interests in order to get reelected; but in such a case, the maximum time that person could suck at the government teat would still be limited to 18 years – before becoming a lobbyist and sucking at some corporate teat. Overall, I think such term limits are useful, and the limits listed in this proposal seem reasonable to me.
    Even so, unless we enact meaningful campaign finance reform and figure out a way to limit the effects of special interest money in the political campaigns, even these term limits won’t be enough to improve our government significantly; though they would help some and, therefore, ought to be pursued.
    In the structure of local church committees of my United Methodist denomination, a system is prescribed whereby when a person has served three one-year terms, they must sit out a term before being eligible to be reelected to that same committee. Perhaps the existing proposal could be modified to make allowance for both representative and senator to be eligible for reelection after a similar time out of office. Or, perhaps even a disallowing of running for the other house of Congress could be stated, so that one could not simply go from House to Senate or vice versa after one had reached the limit in that particular house and would have to find work in the “real world” in the meantime, even if it were as a lobbyist.

  24. danny says:

    the only possibility of ever getting this through would be to exempt the current trash we have up there right now, and make it effective to only those eleected in 2014 and afterward. it would take a period of time for this to really be effective, but if they do not completely destroy our nation before then, it would graduyally become effective. i have a Congressman who has been there for almost thirty years, and he is not worth the air he breathes

  25. Payton says:

    I would be more than happy to march for this cause. If someone will set up the date for the event you can count on me!

  26. Donald Lee says:

    Hi Shah:

    I agree with you completely and I have many more things congress must do and I call it: “IF I HAD MY WAY”. i’m attaching it for your review.

    IF I HAD MY WAY

    BY: DON LEE
    ** ******* *****
    LADERA RANCH, CA. 92694

    1. ALL MEMBERS OF CONGRESS WOULD ONLY BE ABLE TO SERVE A TOTAL OF TWO TERMS OF FOUR YEARS AND SHALL NOT RECEIVE A PENSION OF ANY KIND.

    2. ALL MEMBERS OF CONGRESS SHALL PAY SOCIAL SECURITY TAX AND MEDICARE TAX.

    3. ALL MEMBERS OF CONGRESS SHALL BE NATURAL BORN CITIZENS OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA AND THEIR BIRTH CERTIFICATES MUST BE VERIFIED BY THE ATTORNEY GENERAL PROIR TO BEING SWORN IN AS A SENATOR OR REPRESENATIVE AND SHALL BE STORED IN THE NATIONAL ARCHIVES.

    4. BOTH BODIES OF CONGRESS, SENATE & HOUSE OF REPRESENATIVES, SHALL ONLY PASS LEGISLATION WHEN APPROVED BY AT LEAST 50% OF BOTH PARTIES.

    5. ANY BILLS THAT ARE PASSED BY CONGRESS THAT BECOME LAW AND APPLY TO THE CITIZENS OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA SHALL ALSO APPLY TO THE MEMBERS OF CONGRESS.

    6. NO CONGRESSPERSON SHALL RECEIVE MORE MONEY TO RUN THEIR OFFICE THAN 50% OF WHAT THEY RECEIVE IN THEIR ANNUAL PAY.

    7. ALL MEMBERS OF CONGRESS SHALL SIGN AN AFFIDAVIT, PRIOR TO VOTING ON A BILL, STATING THAT THEY PERSONALLY HAVE READ THE BILL COMPLETELY AND UNDERSTAND IT.

    8. ANY MEMBER OF CONGRESS THAT IS PAID IN MONEY OR GIFTS FOR ATTENDING OR SPEAKING AT ANY ACTIVITY SHALL REPORT THE MONEY OR GIFT AS EARNED INCOME.

    (1)

    9. NO BILL SUBMITTED TO CONGRESS SHALL BE MORE THAN 100 PAGES, (8 ½” x 11”) IN LENGTH USING A 10 FONT.

    10. ALL BILLS SUBMITTED TO CONGRESS SHALL HAVE A SUNSET CLAUSE
    THAT IS NO LONGER THAN 10 YEARS.

    11. ALL BILLS SUBMITTED TO CONGRESS FOR APPROVAL SHALL HAVE A
    30 DAY REVIEW PERIOD BY ALL MEMBERS OF CONGRESS, UNLESS A
    MEMBER IS NOT PRESENT DUE TO MEDICAL REASONS, BEFORE A
    VOTE IS TAKEN.

    12. EARMARKS SHALL BE PROHIBITED IN ANY BILL SUBMITTED TO
    CONGRESS FOR APPROVAL.

    13. I KNOW THAT CONGRESS IS LOOKING AT A WAY TO CUT SPENDING
    ON ENTITLEMENTS BUT BEFORE YOU LOOK AT SOCIAL SECURITY &
    MEDICARE YOU MUST DE-FUND OR ABOLISH INCOME SECURITY &
    MEDICAID. THE REASON I SAY THIS IS BECAUSE SOCIAL SECURITY &
    MEDICARE RECIPIENTS HAVE PAID FOR THESE BENEFITS BUT MOST
    IF NOT ALL OF THE RECIPIENTS OF INCOME SECURITY & MEDICAID
    RECEIVE THESE BENEFITS FOR FREE AND EITHER THE FEDERAL
    GOVERNMENT OR STATE GOVERNMENTS PAY FOR THEM.

    I’VE ALSO NOTICED THAT THE U.S. NATIONAL DEBT CLOCK SHOWS
    MEDICARE & MEDICAID IN THE SAME BOX AND I THINK THAT THE
    TWO SHOULD BE SEPARATED BECAUSE ONE IS PAID FOR BY THE
    RECIPIENT AND ONE IS NOT! WE SHOULD ALSO SHOW HOW MUCH IS
    PAID BY ALL THE STATES COMBINED, FOR MEDICAID!

    I BELIEVE MEDICAID IS MUCH MORE COSTLY THAN MEDICARE WHEN
    THE TOTAL COSTS ARE SHOWN!

    YES I BELIEVE IT IS IMPORTANT TO STRENGTHEN MEDICARE &
    SOCIAL SECURITY. FOR SOME REASON THE PURPOSE OF BOTH OF
    THESE PROGRAMS SEEMS TO HAVE CHANGED OVER TIME. THERE NOW
    ARE MANY PEOPLE COLLECTING THESE BENEFITS THAT HAVEN’T
    PAID INTO THE SYSTEM AND IF WE ELIMINATE PAYING FOR
    EVERYONE THAT HAS NEVER PAID INTO MEDICARE OR SOCIAL
    SECURITY THE COUNTRY WOULD SAVE BILLIONS OF DOLLARS.

    (2)
    NEW LAWS OR ACTIONS FOR CONGRESS

    1. NO PERSON COMING INTO THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA THAT
    IS NOT A CITIZEN OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA SHALL NOT
    BE ELIGIBLE TO BECOME A U.S. RESIDENT OR CITIZEN UNLESS THEY
    HAVE MET THE FOLLOWING REQUIREMENTS:

    A) HAVE A PHYSICAL EXAMINATION BY A LICENSED PHYSICIAN AND
    TEST FOR COMMUNICABLE DISEASES, DISEASES THAT REQUIRE
    MEDICAL TREATMENT, ADDICTIONS OR PHYSICIAL HANDICAPS.
    A WRITTEN REPORT IN ENGLISH SHALL BE PREPARED BY THE
    PHYSICIAN OR LABORATORY PERFORMING THE EXAMINATION OR
    TESTS.

    B) EACH PERSON COMING INTO THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
    SHALL HAVE A VALID PASSPORT ISSUED BY THE COUNTRY OF
    ORIGIN.

    C) EACH PERSON APPLYING FOR U.S. RESIDENCY SHALL HAVE A LETTER FROM A POTENTIAL EMPLOYER STATING THAT THE PERSON APPLYING FOR U.S. RESIDENCY WILL BE EMPLOYED BY THEM. THE LETTER SHALL STATE EMPLOYEE’S NAME, THE APPROXIMATE START DATE, POSITION AND THE EMPLOYER’S TAX I. D. NUMBER OR SOCIAL SECURITY NUMBER.

    D) EACH PERSON APPLYING FOR U.S. RESIDENCY SHALL HAVE PROOF OF FINANCIAL NET WORTH OF $5,000.00 IN A U.S. BANK. PERSONS APPLYING FOR U.S. RESIDENCY THAT HAVE MINOR CHILDREN, THAT WILL ALSO NEED U.S. RESIDENCY, SHALL HAVE PROOF OF AN ADDITIONAL FINANCIAL NET WORTH OF $10,000.00 FOR EACH MINOR CHILD IN A U.S. BANK.

    E) WHEN ALL OF THE REQUIREMENTS OF A) THROUGH D), SHOWN ABOVE, HAVE BEEN MET, THE PERSON APPLYING FOR U.S. RESIDENCY MAY APPLY WITH THE U.S. IMMIGRATION DEPARTMENT.

    (3)

    2. TO CONTROL THE POWER OF DIFFERENT GOVERNMENT
    AGENCIES THAT ARE OUT OF CONTROL, DAMAGING OUR ECONOMY OR TRYING TO CHANGE OUR COUNTRY FROM A REPUBLIC COUNTRY TO A SOCIALIST COUNTRY.

    FOR EXAMPLE THE FOLLOWING GOVERNMENT AGENCIES SHOULD BE DEFUNDED OR ABOLISHED:

    A) ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY
    B) DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION
    C) NATIONAL ENDOWMENT FOR THE ARTS

    BECAUSE OF THE LARGE NUMBER OF GOVERNMENT AGENCIES THAT NEED TO BE ABOLISHED OR DEFUNDED A PERMANENT COMMITTEE OF EQUAL NUMBER OF REPUBLICANS AND DEMOCRATS NEEDS TO BE ESTABLISHED THAT HAVE THE POWER TO ABOLISHED OR DEFUNDED ANY GOVERNMENT AGENCY EXCEPT THE DOD (ARMY, NAVY, AIRFORCE), FBI, CIA or DHS.

    • Sergio Arias says:

      I would modify article 1 to read:
      ALL MEMBERS OF CONGRESS WANTING TO SERVE MORE THAN TWO TERMS OF FOUR YEARS SHALL RETURN ALL SALARIES PAID TO THEM IN THE PREVIOUS TEMS INCLUDING DIETS AND PAY 15% OF WHAT THEY POCKET WITH INSIDE TRADING AND SHALL NOT RECEIVE A PENSION OF ANY KIND.

  27. Lynn Oliver says:

    Elections already establish the concept of term limits placed in the hands of the citizens. Why arbitrarily limit the possibility of voting for a candidate who is doing a good job? We already have the option of voting “out” the ineffective legislators. That is, if we vote. Many Americans seem to complain, but look at the statistics on the percentage of the population that actually votes. Talk is cheap. Responsibility is hard. More government rules to compensate for the lazy is not the answer in my opinion.

    • David George says:

      Lynn, Voting out ineffective legislators is an option? Come live in CA and see how the lazy are compensated for continually reelecting these slugs. Or do you think being reelected really means the slugs are doing a good job? You know better. The whole point here is that the system isn’t working and the possibility of a person doing a good job being thrown out isn’t as scary as the status quo.

  28. Tom says:

    Well…
    It all sounds appealing. But suppose Shah’s home state elected him as senator. Would we want to limit his number of terms ? That would probably ensure that he wouldn’t have sufficient time to get anything worthwhile done.
    I’m afraid the solution is to elect better people. This would probably have to be done via a third party, since both major parties are controlled by idealogues (or worse).

  29. Robert Campsmith says:

    Thanks Shah,

    Take a look at how well term limits worked in Michigan. All new lawmakers stumbling into each other and all trying to be a hero by introducing some ridiculous legislation.

    ALL laws passed by Congress should apply to ALL citizens.

    Congressional districts should be drawn by geographers and not by politicians.

    I like the idea of limiting only consecutive terms, not total terms.

    Stop the preemptive lobbying.

    – Robert

  30. Peter says:

    Unfortunately, term limits hav been proposed, passed (in some jurisdictions) and mainly rejected by the entrenched ruling class and the courts. Yes, it makes sense to codify term limits in the Constitution and it should be given a shot. However, it might be quicker to align with the Tea Party and using the 250,000-strong army of readers, make it clear to all elected officials that we intend to vote them out of office after they have served the allotted number of terms. Citizen government was what the framers had in mind and, for the sake of the Republic, we must get back to that.

  31. Mark says:

    I have recently see this guy on TV named Doctor Ben Carson, I think he is currently the smartest man in the world, Get him to support it and I will support it too. I think it is too little too late at this point in time, We will be 22 trillion in debt by the time Obama leaves office. I think we are near the end at this point in time. We are Japan. Empires fall and new one’s arise. America was the best country in the history of the world for 2 generations, not a bad run, Stick a fork in it because it is done, as an Empire. It will be a decent place for a few more years, (compared to the rest of the world) but the game is over. The country is more than broke at this point in time.

  32. Jim Dowd says:

    While I roundly support HJ 41, I feel it doesn’t go far enough, and this may be overreach at this point in the “revolution” I suggest the following be considered:

    1. Eliminate all special interest groups and make lobbying by business unlawful.
    2. All election costs to be borne by the government thus eliminating the need to pander for funds from deep pocketed corporate interests.
    3. Once the term limit is reached the congress person can not be involved in any additional federal government activity (assuming item 1 above is not adopted).

    I realize this might sound polyanish but these issues need to be debated by an enlightened electorate otherwise nothing of consequence will happen.

  33. Wayne says:

    Shah, term limits are a good idea, but they will never happen as long as Congress controls the process by which Constitutional Amendments are enacted. And the voters still cling to party lines and don’t realize that BOTH parties are the problem. So the only real solution is to educate the voters better. And that will only happen through a People’s Lobby that is dedicated to educating the voters about any legislation and issues before Congress and the effects (both pro and con) that each have on the majority of the public.

    I would propose a People’s Lobby supported by donations from voters that would support 2 lobby representatives from each state that would be tasked to research each piece of proposed legislation and publish their findings via website with a survey that would allow voters to express their opinions. These opinions would then be used as a basis for the People’s Lobby to go back to Congresspeople and lobby for the majority voter consensus. The lobby representatives would also be tasked to track the voting record of each Congressperson and report their voting records on each issue. This would then be used to inform the voters about their Congresspeople’s voting record when they come up for reelection. It would help to keep the voters more informed and let them know what their Congresspeople are really doing. And it would also keep their Congresspeople voting more in line with the wishes of the majority of the voters wishes.

    Today’s Congress has little or no idea of what the majority of voters really want because the voters have no real voice in Washington. And the voters really have no idea (other than media sensationalism0 what the issues are or how their Congresspeople vote on those issues (or what they hide in legislation for their own gain). A People’s Lobby would bring more of these issues before the voters without all the sensationalism and with more information that would give the voter a better view of what is really happening in Washington and would also serve to keep Congress more informed with the opinions of the more informed voters.

  34. Jay Hendon says:

    The only real solution is to restore the Constitutional limits imposed by Article 1, Section 8 and the 10th amendment. I’ve read reports from citizens of a State that imposed term limits (Wisconsin? Michigan?) which said that civil servants and lobbyists ended up running things because just as legislators learned the ropes their term expired but the civil servants and the lobbyists remained. Until the principles of liberty are taught in our schools things will only get worse.

  35. Doris Kelsey says:

    The problem with term limits is forcing someone out of office the people really WANT to stay in, Bernie Sanders for example. The electoral college had it’s place in it’s day when people traveled by horse back. It is obsolete! We need to go with popular will, but keep paper ballots (the machines are crooked). The congressional districts need to be set up by a computer, not a committee. We need a law that says an ex-rep/senator may NOT be a lobbyist for at least 10 years after leaving office (better yet, ban all lobbyists). We need to let the League of Women’s Voters run the debates so ALL the candidates can take part, not just the ones the two party system OKs. There needs to be a limit on the amount of campaign funds each candidate can spend, and all candidates should be given the same amount. No “outside” money should be allowed. Basically, more debates and less money in campaigns.

    • Michael Jennings says:

      Don’t get too carried away on the paper ballots.
      “It’s not the people who vote that count; it’s the people who count the votes.” —Joseph Stalin (paraphrased by ACORN?)
      Actual Translation: “You know, comrades,” says Stalin, “that I think in regard to this: I consider it completely unimportant who in the party will vote, or how; but what is extraordinarily important is this — who will count the votes, and how.”

      In addition to that, the time of Jim Crow is passed. It is time for every voter to show valid picture ID before casting a ballot. There is entirely too much voter fraud in this country. Dead people shouldn’t be allowed to vote.

  36. Jay Curtis, author of THE CODE says:

    While this is an uphill battle which the incumbent Senators and Representatives will not support easily, finding tons of excuses for why its a bad idea, things are so bad in Washington that we should simply start advertising for it on TV and form a PAC to support those who will agree to vote for it and against those that won’t. Considering the gun registration vote where 90%+ of the American people wanted simply common sense universal registration and yet so many (even Dems) voted no, the only way to achieve this reform, like gun control, is to pour the money effort into the campaigns.

    • Michael Jennings says:

      Universal gun registration has historically been a precursor to gun confiscation, and most recently in Australia. Lack of private firearms tips the odds in favor of criminals (and governments). This is NOT what our founding fathers had in mind for this Republic.

  37. bob says:

    Throwing them all out sounds good except that the lobbyists that got them elected in the first place would just get a new set of crooks elected. If we really want to decriminalize Washington it would have to be through campaign finance reform.

    • Jo says:

      Yes, campaign finance reform is the root cure for the 3-ring circus in Washington, where the astronomical sums spent in elections buy way too much influence by special interests and the wealthy. Term limits are not needed, just better informed voters paying attention and voting out the bad apples, but we do need better nonpartisan factfinding on issues and voting records. A good read on reform is “Republic Lost: How Money Corrupts Congress–and a Plan to Stop It” by Lawrence Lessig that examines solutions from the left and right (only an amendment agreeable to all sides is likely to pass). Lawmakers now meet only 3 days a week, the rest of the time they are on the phone dialing for dollars! Then when they leave office, they are hired as lobbyists by the same special interests they voted bills for as a lucrative reward for being their pet dog!! It’s time to end this corruption.

      • Sheila Dickson says:

        Jo , I absolutely agree. Corruption of our elective officials is not
        because of the length service, but the expense of elections and
        having the lobbyists set the agenda. These lobbyists represent
        the corporations which really control governmental decisions.
        Recent case point. Filibustering the vote for new gun safety policies.

  38. Charlie Gilson says:

    100% FOR term limits, And NO pensions for them either, PERIOD!!!!! They can Only get what we get! Ever wonder How or Why “anybody” would spend hundreds of thousands of dollars to get re-elected to Any office that pays WAY less than that each year…..the Mafia knows, we haven’t figured that out yet?????

  39. Raymond Porter says:

    Politicians should have a term limit just like the president. If they do a good job they could be re-elected after skipping a term.

  40. Anonymole says:

    A better way:

    **** 29th Amendment *****

    Section 1.

    No person shall retain the office of Senator of the United States for consecutive terms. No person shall retain the office of Senator of the United States for a total duration exceeding eighteen years.

    Section 2.

    Term limits for the office of Representative of the United States shall be set at four years. No person shall retain the office of Representative of the United States for consecutive terms. No person shall retain the office of Representative of the United States for a total duration exceeding twelve years.

    Rational:

    Every vote every congressperson takes today is done with an eye toward the next election. Every lobbyist visit is done with the knowledge that the targeted congressperson has the next election on their mind. Every 2 or 6 years a considerable amount of time and effort is spent by every congressperson on their reelection, time and effort WE paid for. Maintaining office is the primary endeavor every congressperson takes to as soon as they enter office. The fact remains that our laws are being made by people who’s sole goal is not to enact laws to the benefit of U.S. Citizens but to remain in their positions. Every vote they take, every speech they give, every bill they introduce is couched with reelection in mind. Most congresspersons look at Congress membership as a life long pursuit, a corporate sponsored life long pursuit.

    The 29th Amendment must be enacted to change the term limits for all of Congress.
    • 4 year single term for Representatives
    • 6 year single term for Senators.

    No sequential terms.
    Three term maximum.
    Reelection only after sitting out for at least one term.

    Single terms will reduce the impact of lobbyists and corporate sponsors. Single terms will allow vetting of every congressperson’s record. Single terms will return congresspersons to the private sector to remix with the citizenry. Single terms will reduce the impact of party line voting. Single terms will focus Congress on what’s important – the county’s well-being. What Congress must do during their time in office should be one thing and one thing only – to create and pass laws that benefit the citizens of the United States of America.

    Forcing congressional candidates to skip terms will allow the record of each past Senator and Representative to be examined in detail and either condemned or extolled. If the latter, then their reelection during a subsequent campaign would be a sign of their efficacy and trustworthiness.

    • Arem says:

      “LIKE!” You comments add many solid “fleshing out” points to my own ideas (which absolutely embrace Term Limits). Max of 2, consecutive OR non-consecutive, is interesting (either House). Max of 2, in EACH House (Rep “steps up” to Senate, for example) — whether consecutive or non-consecutive. In any event, a “2-year” term is simply silly for a Representative, a “4-year” term much better. I also think a “4-year” term for President is also silly for the same fundamental reason — too much time “wasted” posturing and politicking for re-election; a “6-year” term better, limited to “12 years” total, whether consecutive or non-consecutive. I’d also advocate “5-year” terms for Senators (max 2, consecutive or non-consecutive). ‘See the 4-/5-/6-year scheme, here? The POINT of it is to FORCE “government” to learn to work together for the sake of the Nation as-a-whole rather than “a” political party or the self-aggrandizement of any given elected office-holding “individual”. The implicit (potential) on-going “rollover” effect in all 3 branches via such staggered terms would, I submit, altogether cancel-out the on-going “gridlock” affect that exists between the two dominant political parties, more easily introduce “new blood” into political discourse from both new and existing “alternative” political parties, and motivate the “Silent Majority” to take a far keener interest in both national-level governance AND national elections. Lastly: in many of the Comments I’ve read,there seem to be three evident predominant biases. One is an implicit presumption that national governance will “continue as-is” rather than actually change (even radically) in response to the imposition of “term limits” (via Constitutional amendment). The other is an assumption that the imposition of “term” modifications in any form will fail to engender self-induced (positive) systemic changes in “The System” over time. The third is an evident (broad) “acceptance” (individual mindset) that SOMEBODY ELSE (always) knows best/better than mere me … and isn’t our government already loaded-up with “The Best/Brightest?” [Ahhh -- NOPE!] A fourth is an evidently culturally-inculcated expectation that ANY proposed “change” must be a pre-proven WINNER prior to adoption/implementation — that there exists no such thing as a “feedback-loop” whereby changes instituted are not monitored for results, compared to expectations in terms of intended goals/objectives, and closely examined/evaluated with respect to the occurence/impact of “unintended consequences” — and then consequently “tweaked” accordingly.

  41. RA says:

    Isn’t it Chinese Proverb that says, “A trip of a thousand miles begins with just one step.” This is a giant first step in the right direction. All else is just distraction until this step is taken.

  42. ray says:

    Term Limits for CONgress – the most important legislation needed to save the U.S.

    One can make arguments for and against, but in the end, you get a political class that is above the law as they are the ones that create the laws. Corruption becomes the staple of the day and re-election is more important than what is best the country. Term limits would also instill cooperation between the two corrupt parties. Experience can be handed down to new members via a staggered elections.

    But, who in CONgress would willingly cut their own throat by passing this legislation – back to zero percent.

  43. Dick M. says:

    The amendment should be backed up by a national petition to start a grass-roots grass fire to singe the incumbents. The petition should be in all forms of media – internet, social, paper, etc.

  44. Jim J. says:

    Some form of term limits are worth the fight to get in place. To allow the benefits of retaining the few good legislators, perhaps an incumbent can run again after sitting out 2 terms for a Representative and 1 term for a Senator. It’s going to take a huge ground swell of grass roots support to get any bill to a vote.

  45. Jacqueline K says:

    Start a state by state movement for a term limits constitutional amendment. Congress will never do it. One six year term per candidate period (including president). No reelections. Stagger election years so that there are folks that know what’s going on. Country pays costs of elections and the people elected make a very very good wage to attract quality.

  46. Ed M says:

    Term limits is a good idea. Add to that the requirement that elected officials and all of the related bureaucracy be subject to the laws the elected officials pass – no exclusions or exceptions. And one further item – we need to disperse the D.C. based bureaucracy throughout the country. We have made Washington DC and the surrounding area a kind of economic super zone to a large degree immune to the economic distress of the rest of the country. I have read where over a third of the D.C. economy is related to government spending; no telling what that number would be if we include the ancillary spending.

    • Robert H. Bartlett, Sr. says:

      You are spot on< I would also like to see term limits on University and College Professors,Dept. Heads, and Administrators.. They no longer represent the parents and they do not care about what they teach. Again the Ethics, Morality, and Professionalism no longer exist in any significant way !!! ( We need to eliminate the Teachers Unions and the NEA).

  47. RRR says:

    Personally I like the idea of term limits. However, I think any politician serving in the federal government should be limited to a maximum of 6 years total except for the president who would be limited to 8. If they are not successful in 6 years with getting their agenda passed then it is either a bad agenda or they are a bad politician. How long would the average worker last if they could not perform their job functions within 6 years? Without term limits a lot of politicians use these positions as a career. I don’t think that is what was intended when the founding fathers wrote the constitution. While we are at it throw in another amendment which states that the government shall not create laws that affect the citizens which do not apply to all citizens including all federal officials. The politicians have created their own elite society and protected themselves from many of the laws that affect the rest of the citizens of the USA.

  48. Larry says:

    Don’t know how accurate the below is but I think it paints a clear picture of the politician in America. We need major reforms NOW! —- Scary Obituary – Bow Your Head AndPray!

    In 1887 Alexander Tyler, a Scottish history professor at the
    University of Edinburgh, had this to say about the fall of the
    Athenian Republic some 2,000 years prior: “A democracy is always
    temporary in nature; it simply cannot exist as a permanent
    form of government. A democracy will continue to exist up until
    the time that voters discover that they can vote themselves generous
    gifts from the public treasury. From that moment on, the majority
    always votes for the candidates who promise the most benefits from
    the public treasury, with the result that every democracy will finally
    collapse over loose fiscal policy, (which is) always followed by a
    dictatorship.”

    “The average age of the world’s greatest civilizations from the
    beginning of history, has been about 200 years. During those 200
    years, these nations always progressed through the following sequence:

    From bondage to spiritual faith;
    From spiritual faith to great courage;
    From courage to liberty;
    From liberty to abundance;
    From abundance to complacency;
    From complacency to apathy;
    From apathy to dependence;
    From dependence back into bondage.”
    The Obituary follows:

    Born 1776, Died 2012
    It doesn’t hurt to read this several times.
    Professor Joseph Olson of Hamline University School of Law in
    St. Paul, Minnesota, points out some interesting facts concerning
    the last Presidential election:

    Number of States won by: Obama: 19 Romney: 29
    Square miles of land won by: Obama: 580,000 Romney: 2,427,000
    Population of counties won by: Obama: 127 million Romney: 143 million
    Murder rate per 100,000 residents in counties won by: Obama: 13.2 Romney: 2.1

    Professor Olson adds: “In aggregate, the map of the territory
    Romney won was mostly the land owned by the taxpaying citizens
    of the country.

    Obama territory mostly encompassed those citizens living in low
    income tenements and living off various forms of government
    welfare…”

    Olson believes the United States is now somewhere between the
    “complacency and apathy” phase of Professor Tyler’s definition of
    democracy, with some forty percent of the nation’s population
    already having reached the “governmental dependency” phase.

    If Congress grants amnesty and citizenship to twenty million
    criminal invaders called illegals – and they vote – then we can say
    goodbye to the USA in fewer than five years .

    If you are in favor of this, then by all means, delete this message.

    If you are not, then pass this along to help everyone realize just how
    much is at stake, knowing that apathy is the greatest danger to our
    freedom..

    • Michael Jennings says:

      The date of death is somewhat premature. But if something is not done soon, the demise of the once great beacon of freedom is assured. Once the 50% dependency mark has been passed, abandon all hope of recovery unless you are willing to “…water the tree of liberty with the blood of tyrants and patriots.”

  49. Mike P says:

    We must keep in mind, that limiting their terms would increase the number of people we need to occupy the seats of Congress. This means we will have a vast number of retired Congressmen that we would have to support. Realistically, we would need to modify (read eliminate) their retirement benefits to affordably reduce their term limits so drastically.

  50. Yugobud says:

    I believe that first we should have a national assembly somewhere convenient and capable of handling such a crowd as we hope we have to see if there is real support of the ideas that are being proposed here. If such an assembly of support is realized then we should begin to find some in the group who have the expertise and desire to begin to mold our protest into a recognizable venture and then start getting the ideas and proposals that are fairly reasonable and in the direction where we feel this movement’s goals and agendas can be written in such a way as to convey our goals to the nation and begin the process of turning our hopes for changes in our nations governance back what our forefathers had in mind when they formed The USA.
    Let me know when and where the changes will be made and I’ll be there.

  51. William Gilbert says:

    Though term limits sounds good, it would also eliminate the few good politicians. With Citizens United allowing unlimited, anonymous funds to candidates, all new politicians would be bought and paid for already.

    Instant Run-off Voting, IRV, or Rank Voting, allows third parties into the duopoly voting game. When there are more than 2 candidates, IRV guarantees majority winners (50% +), ends spoilers, ends wasted votes on candidates you know will lose, and ends expensive run-offs.

    With IRV, the voter ranks his choices by preference 1st, 2nd, 3rd. If on the 1st count there is no majority winner (50% +), the lowest candidate is eliminated and his ballots are recounted for the voter’s 2nd choices, until a majority winner emerges, voila, Instant Run-off.

    IRV is used in many US cities, and Ireland and Australia for 90 years.
    IRV increases voter interest and so encourages better candidates.
    It is simple enough to count by hand or with present machinery with an upgrade.
    Voters understand it and like it, where it is used

    Instant Run-off Voting (IRV)
    Vote 1, 2, 3.
    Majority winners, No spoilers, No expensive Run-off
    FAIR AND SIMPLE.
    Voters like it. Non-profit, non-partisan, FairVote.org

  52. Jeff Siebert says:

    Our founding fathers are rolling over and over and over in their graves. There is no such thing as a professional politician. Man is only free when federal government is limited.
    Unfortunately the people who get entitlements feel that is what is meant by man being free “not free give me’s” but I am a free American. Get this attitude corrected by attaching work for entitlement and people may learn what it means to be free.

  53. Bob Lewelllyn says:

    It’s a shame we can’t have a system to weed out the incompetents and keep the good ones. This system could never be implemented and who would judge. Two terms is enough, then, perhaps be eligible again after staying on the sidelines for two terms. I think a certain number of them are going to be owned, no matter who they are.

    • ray says:

      95% are corrupt; they are competent only from the perspective to enrich themselves, follow the party line, and ignore what is best for the country.

  54. 48ozhalfgallons says:

    Wishful thinking. The top wealth interests are the power in this country. That power assures its own preservation through lobbying, financial incentive, and term perpetuation of congress and parties. Nothing short of outright revolution or invasion will change anything. The intentions of honest men does not exist in congress. The power structure seeks to divide us. The interests of wealth for its own perpetuation abides solely in perpetuating the fragmentation of the interests of the masses. Keep the masses occupied with struggle; wealth and power will remain where it is. Big centralized government “protecting” the masses is the handmaiden for the wealthy. The two party system is exemplary of collusion of capital and government.

  55. Bruce Smith says:

    All that’s needed is an amendment to the Constitution that reads: All laws made by Congress shall apply in their entirety and without exemptions to members of congress and their staffs.
    With this, members of congress would quit – in droves.

    • allan h (from aus) says:

      Many good comments here. As an Aussie I do not know the ins & out of the USA system, but ALL democracies allow for ‘Power Groups’ to support/nominate’their henchmen/women, who by political demographics stay for life in certain electorates. The few electorates that ‘swing’ change the balance of power when the ruling party stuff up. I have the view that;
      1. a countrys constitution should prohibit candidates who have known alliegence to, or are ‘nominated’ or supported by ANY power group or ‘party’.
      2. electoral candidates when nominating must publicly declare their assets and interests,
      3. They should nominate the salary package they require to be paid, FIXED for their elected term,
      4. The taxpayer should pay for equal, reasonable public notices – papers TV – to enable FULL disclosure of the views, history, asset declaration of each EQUALLY.
      5. Each must lodge a nomination ‘deposit’ say $2000 which is lost if the individual doesnt get say 5% of the vote.
      6. Voting should provide for preferences of candidate up to a max 50% of those in the ballot.

      No of terms % length should be part of the discussion on now Ministers & the President or Premier is chosen. I am inclined to think it best for the elected members to elect the Pres or Prem, & the speaker in the first sitting. He/she then should choose the ministers to from a ‘cabinet’. If things are not going well, voters could pressure their elected reps, who could by a vote of no confidence in the Pres/Prem elect another member to the position.
      No doubt it needs a referendum to change, and it would take a huge groundswell of support to get the referendum.

  56. Paul Dueweke says:

    I am against such an amendment because:

    1) It does not solve the problem. This still allows 18 years in Congress. That’s 4 re-election cycles, including the one that goes between the House and the Senate. In other words, for nearly all of their Congressional careers, they are running for re-election. And when you consider state and local offices, the professional politician is still offered a long career in “public service.” That’s no solution. In fact, it further undermines what’s left of our Constitutional Republic because—
    2) It deludes We The People into thinking the problem is solved and delays a real solution for at least one generation, probably longer. Another twenty or thirty years of current Government growth, and America is history. And that is the ultimate goal of the Big Money behind the progressive ideology of the Living Constitution, whence all this growth comes, with the indispensible patronage of the Supreme Court.

    The only way to even maybe get responsible politicians is to deny them re-election. Politicians should be farmers, teachers, welders, engineers, lawyers, cops, and salespeople. Let them go to the legislature, serve a single term, and then go back home to live with the laws they created. Today’s career politicians are so isolated from the effects of their legislation and so intent on their empires that they become focused on spending and on the buying and selling of power rather than on the good of the Republic.

    If politicians are to work on our behalf, they must be one of us, not one of “them.” Many say political experience is needed to do a good job at politics, but the evolution of Government shows what an increasingly “experienced” political establishment has provided us.

    The most extreme form of term limits would allow a person to serve one term in one office at one level of government, i.e., local, state, or federal. One modification of that would be to allow a person to go on to serve as governor or president. Another modification would be to allow one term each at the local, state, and federal levels plus governor or president. But even this is allowing many re-election opportunities for special interests to support.

    To make any of this work, one must also revise the terms. Six-year terms at the state and federal levels might be appropriate. A six-year term in the House, for example, would allow one third to turn over every two years. I would also advocate an intensive training period of at least two months before the term starts to educate the inexperienced incumbent, including the president, in the original meaning of the Constitution, procedures, realities of the office, and history of bills. This would also be a good idea for today’s “professional” politicians. This is a tremendous overhaul of our electoral system, but it is one that matches the seriousness of our problem.

  57. Steven says:

    I think this would be a good start. My concern would be that they will still find a way to put it to us they always do. How would this pass? They would be voting themselves out of a job and lush benefits.

  58. Larry Gillmore says:

    A lot of pros and cons with term limits. I am sure it would have many more pros. The best thing would be serve because of the good you could do for our country. They have too much to get their hands on. I served 8 yr on school board for nothing because I love our school and our children. Why can”t great privileged American men and women want to do that With a Modest Salary.
    Thanks

  59. Steve says:

    Limiting terms is a good idea, but it needs to be coupled with dramatically reducing the taxpayer-funded benefits that these elected officials enjoy. Cut their benefits to be more along the lines of what other working Americans have and you will reduce the number of people who want to sit on the elected gravy train. Reducing terms but keeping benefits as they are will be a bigger problem because there will be more “former” elected officials.

  60. John Parken says:

    We don’t need a new law/resolution/Constitutional Amendment for term limits. All that has to happen is to remove the MONEY that flows to the politicians pockets. What we need is a grass roots movement to initiate a Constitutional Amendment to a) limit how much money can be donated/given to a political candidate. Look at how much money is spent in them getting elected! b) make it a felony for lobbyists to provide any money, service, gratuity, etc. to a politician in return for political favor or legislative favor.

    Take the money out of Washington and maybe we can find some people who really CARE about the Constitution and the United States of America, instead of becoming rich at OUR expense.

    Do any of you realize that Congress has already gutted the STOCK Act? The one where Congress was not going to be allowed to trade on insider information? Well, the part about Congress having to report any and all stock transactions to the public has been REMOVED from the Act!!! This includes the Republicans as well as the Democrats! Can you see they are there to get rich and to screw us, the people who voted them in? It’s time we took back America from a new breed of CARPETBAGGERS! It’s way past time to restore integrity and character in the halls of Congress!

  61. gk says:

    Let’s not forget to fix:
    > They get full pay and benefits for LIFE after only one term!? I say pay them more while they are there, and then quite when they leave!

    > Why can they trade stocks, buy land, etc. even if they server on a committee that deals with the matter. So we must stop insider trading.

    > They should NOT be allowed to work for or lobby for any company they had official committee work with.

    > They should NOT be allowed to “keep” the re-election campaign money left over in their slush funds when they leave!

    > Staff members and the bureaucrats should also be replaced when the congressman leaves. If not, the staff gains too much power!

    > The Plum Book of “plum jobs” within the government should be closed to all retiring congressmen, senators, and staff. The Plum Book allows a died in the wool Democrat or Republican to move in the bureaucracy and then influence the decisions of that department based on their bias. The bureaucracy is supposed to be NON-Partisan!

    Just some thoughts…

  62. J says:

    Maybe we should try a different kind of amendment. An amendment that determines if a representative or senator is truly honest and representing his or her area by some type of system then allowing him or her to stay or dismissing him or her permanently (without any possibility to obtain any government job afterward) due to corruption or probable corruption or using the office for personal profit or influence . Of course the ones (using at least 3 different groups which believe in different politics – Dem, Rep Lib) to determine this must not be influenced or be able to be influenced by the government or those influenced or partial to government but want the improvement and honesty of government. Well mabe this is asking too much!

  63. ken says:

    The term limit resolution has no chance.

    Citizens are better off throwing all of them out.

    In the last election, i voted third party candidate wherever possible and against the incumbent regardless of party.

    The trick would be to convince enough of the people that don’t even bother to vote to join in on the effort to throw them all out.

  64. RickB says:

    Terms should be lengthened, then limited as needed. Reps have to run every two years, making them full-time fund-raisers. Take away the intense attention to money by lengthening HoR terms to 4 years, Prez to 6 years, senators to 8. Two terms for Prez, at least; not sure about others.

    Life expectancy is increasing all the time. Longer terms make sense. They enable especially legislators to learn the job and become, maybe, good and wise, less meddlesome. Let the good ones stay and term limit the crumbs???????

  65. Gary L. says:

    I’m all for change but, three terms in the house and then two terms in the senate followed by a cushy cabinet job in the administration adds up to a lifelong career. How about a maximum of 14 years of federal political service with a 401K retirement and a cobra plan for health care. This would mean that all who serve would also be required to make a living in the private sector during their lifetimes.

  66. Robert says:

    I am sorry to say your amendment would not end the corrupting influences; just change the vessels more frequently.
    You would be better off with an amendment that defines a person as a living, breathing organism not an eternal and lifeless organization. Then, declare that Congress must give primary consideration to the interests of persons before the interest of other entities. Organizations could still address Congress but only with the interests of people as their paramount concern.
    However, I am not optimistic in this regard.
    .

  67. John Spence says:

    A lot of good ideas here but, if polls show 90% of Americans agree we need more or better gun control through applications, permits whatever and the politicians still vote against it proves we don’t have a chance to effect change without a wholesale overthrow of government as we know it. We must first find a way to outlaw lobbying, and then disband the Democratic and Republican parties. Perhaps when the dollar finally collapses and our country slides into poverty and ruin it will be easier to effect more changes, one can only hope!

  68. Ronnie Dexter says:

    Does out system of government provide for any way for a constitional ammendment (for term limits) be introduced by and voted on by the general public ? If only the congress has the ability to introduce it and vote on it, it wil never pass. How can the people make it happen with in our system ?

  69. Rick campos says:

    If we allow these Criminals to continue to Run and Ruin Our Country-I Pity all future generations of Americans. These Evil, Wicked Men and Women Have their Reward. Those Obscene Bank accounts will not Buy a Single drink of water in their Final Abode.

  70. The devlil's advocate says:

    Why bother ? I’m comfortable. I’ve got cable This government has achieved the ultimate utilitarian goal of the “greatest good for the greatest number” through social welfare programs. It takes a real effort to be truly “poor” in the US today. If things were really bad wouldn’t people be taking to the streets already ?
    The rich get richer. Isn’t that how it’s always been ?
    Sorry Shah, but to suggest that term limits will mean people are more interested in politics is a stretch.
    The corrupt mind set of congress is nothing more than a reflection of the “me first” mentality that exists across society and no, term limits wouldn’t suddenly see idealistic, values driven people standing for congress, it would just lead to politicans exponentially greasing their own palms in the limited time they have.

  71. Charles says:

    Well, I’ve been asking what I can do about all of the corruption. Maybe this is a start. First, I think that term limits might be good, if for no other reason, to get political representatives to know that things can be changed, as you said. One concern that I have though is, would this just encourage them to try to do all the damage they can more quickly, before they are booted out of office, thereby bringing about negative consequences even sooner? Another is the lame duck syndrome. If they are near the end of their term, they might feel free to do things they might not do otherwise. I don’t know the answer to those concerns, but they should be considered. I can’t think of any other consequences, although there could be some.

    I’m inclined to say that no exceptions should be made. An example would be that a person gets 51% of the popular vote, but 49% thinks he/she did a lousy job. As divided as our country has been on recent issues, I see that as a distinct possibility. So, exceptions should not be allowed. Besides, a candidate who expresses similar values could always be elected.

    Thanks for asking our opinion. I would support a movement to do this in whatever way I can.

  72. Geoff Thomas says:

    Any job with power encourages corruption, not just money corruption but jobs for the boys, vote buying, the whole sickening gamut, so limiting the term reduces corruption significantly as the sneaky stuff takes time to set up and the shorter term will create a lot of whistle blowers from the departees.

  73. Randy says:

    We absolutely need a revolution. The first rule of a bureaucracy is to preserve itself. The founding fathers put a clause in the constitution that if the people were dissatisfied with this gov. they have the right and the obligation to replace it with a government that suits them better. Dont expect our politicians to put an end to their drunken orgy. It is up to the citizens to put an end to this monstrosity. In the end The people get the gov they deserve.

  74. Francesco S says:

    The President can only be elected for two terms while there is no limit for members of Congress? Why?
    Serving Congress should be limited in the number of terms not only to secure an effective rotation of people and ideas, but also to avoid that a too deep rooted presence in public service may give way to self reassurance aka …corruption. There should also be a retirement age, say 70 years, just like in any profession, to secure the best of individual ‘productivity’ and encourage the circulation of fresh ideas. Finally, becoming a candidate should also be subject to a clean record and having the desirable qualifications to serve the country. Is that too much?

  75. Matt Gauch says:

    Shah -

    Nice try, but not nearly revolutionary enough. Let’s tackle campaign finance problems as well:

    Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled (two-thirds of each House concurring therein), That the following article is proposed as an amendment to the Constitution of the United States, which shall be valid to all intents and purposes as part of the Constitution when ratified by the legislatures of three-fourths of the several States within seven years after the date of its submission for ratification:
    Article–
    Section 1.
    Members of Congress shall be selected at random from the rolls of registered voters within each congressional district to serve one term – 4 years in the House of Representatives, 6 years in the Senate. At the end of each term of service, the selected member from each district will stand for an election to retain in office; each member so selected may stand for a maximum of two consecutive such elections to retain in office, such that any ember may serve a maximum of three consecutive terms of 4 or 6 years.
    The Secretary of State of each member state shall appoint a commission to determine an appropriate algorithm to adequately ensure the randomness of such selection from among the registered voters in each congressional district. Should an incumbent member not be retained in office by a simple majority (50%) of the votes cast in such an election, the state’s congressional electorate commission shall apply the same random selection process to select another member from among the rolls of registered voters to serve the next full term for the congressional seat.
    Section 2.
    With the sole exception of the salaries paid to members of Congress, Congress shall make no law affecting the general populace which does not apply equally to the members of Congress. Likewise, Congress shall make no law affecting the members of Congress which does not apply equally to every other citizen of the United States of America.

    SERIOUSLY: How could this POSSIBLY be any worse than what we have now???

  76. CuizCal says:

    Returning to democracy. we need to return to Republic, not democracy.
    If you want an example of long term democracy effect, look at Italy
    or Greece. Do we want that here?

    Create a system of evaluation of all congress members by which the
    term limits can be varied. Good grade can stay a bit longer. Bad grade must go
    a bit sooner. An idea: grade by 1) constituents, 2) the other two branches of
    government, and 3) by other congress members, in equal parts.

    Drones: put egregious congress members on probation by having drones
    following them day and night and accumulating data on behavior to make
    sure the congressman is not malfunctioning. Eg: moderation in sex, food, TV time,
    Golf, ego trips, hairdresser, gambling, jet travel, insider trading, etc.

    Educate the electorate to in fact vote on the basis of knowledge, not habit or
    peer pressure.

    As soon as a policy reaches a bipartisan stage, put a computer in charge
    of managing it. Who is going to bribe a computer?

    I hope this helps,

    CuizCal

  77. dohm says:

    I think that we must first recognize that America was founded not as a democracy but a constitutional republic, where strict limitations were placed upon the exercise of government powers, it is not, as commonly misunderstood to be a grant of powers and authority. It is beyond arguement that in a democracy, when the people learn that they may vote themselves largess from the public treasury simply by electing anyone that promises them more than the last politician, then we enter the death spiral we are currently experiencing. The public would do well to educate themselves to the facts of the founding principles of our nation and comport themselves accordingly. This education would include the intentional distortion of words that describe essential principles such as the difference between us as a democracy and us as a constitutional republic. Ignorance can be cured…stupid cannot.

  78. Gul Bhatia says:

    I would also add that a person who currently holds an elective office, should resign from that office before filing to run for another elective office. If this rule had been in effect State Representative Barack Obama would have had to resign from that position before he could file nomination papers to run for the Illinois Senate. As a follow on State Senator Barack Obama would have had to resign as Illinois Senator before filing his nomination papers for the US Senate; and consequently he would have had to resign as US Senator before filing his nomination papers for US President.

    Other options that I would like to see are: 1) Repeal the 17th Amendment and also 2) No pensions for State & Federal Elected Officials; including President. We do not need retired Royal living off the State.

  79. Carl says:

    I can’t believe it. NO ONE noticed that Shah, and everybody who left a comment, COMPLETELY ignored the falsity that we are supposed to be living an a DEMOCRACY??? Did anybody ever hear of a REPUBLIC??? Democratic rule is simply mob rule, that ends in socialism because all the “majority” votes themselves the wealth and resources of the minority. Our constitution was set up to protect the individual man and woman from mob rule (democracy, socialism, communism). All this blather about “returning to a democracy” is treasonous against a republican form of government. Wake up people, and study who is the mob that is voting themselves everything you ever thought you owned or thought of owning.

  80. Exasperated says:

    Any consideration of Congressional term limits (such as a constitutional amendment or federal law) should also include a specific and shorter campaign period-90 days for primaries and an additional
    90 days for the election. For those positions where no primary is
    required, the single candidate can only campaign for 90 days. No advertising of any kind (Mail, Newspaper, Magazines, TV, Cable,
    telephone, e-mail, polls or surveys, etc.) would be allowed outside
    of each respective 90 day period. Violations of the 90 day campaign
    periods would be subject to federal fines.

  81. Sidney Besvinick says:

    Shah, Most of your responders bemoan the fact that those in office will never vote for this proposed amendment. Therefore, I suggest something a little more radical. I intend to attend rallies of all legitimate candidates for Congress in the area where I live and ask each one, publicly, to take a stand on this issue. Aside from the publicity this would get and give, voters would know the candidate’s stand and could vote accordingly.
    I’m tired of preaching to the choir. It’s time the sinners heard the message.

    • Arem says:

      Sidney: What you seem to actually want/seek already exists in the Libertarian Party. Ron Paul fan? Google Ron Paul and Libertarian Party, then also check out the organization “Free & Equal”. I’d also suggest that you scope-out “The Project to Restore America”, the “Sound Dollar Campaign”, and the “The Laissez Faire Club” — plus individuals (with a “web presence”) such as Porter Stansberry, Bill Bonner, and Doug Casey, each of whom offer a “free” or proffer a “cheap” email-by-subscription Newsletter. Gaining “a clue” about what’s REALLY what in the country and world today with these latter 3 individuals (in addition to Ron Paul and Gary Johnson) is gonna truly “rock your world” and literally “rattle your brain” (OUT OF the “sheeple” mentality and mindset you were raised in and groomed into by YOUR GOVERMENT since the moment you first drew beath. I’m kidding, joking or lying? FIND OUT FOR YOURSELF! Start with Stansberry (for “basics” he’s got truly terrific free stuff!), then add Casey (for akin yet truly mind-expanding/-challenging “alternative” views/perspectives views) — and THEN add Bonner (relax, here, and simply “enjoy” his musings/insights/perspectives). And when you FINALLY get to/arrive at “dead serious”, I suggest The Sovereign Society. FWIW! :)

      • Arem says:

        Oops! MY BAD in forgetting to add that “The Laissez Faire Club” is your Go-To resource for (truly) “educational materials” authored by historical figures who literally fought (and “lost”) THEN the very same battles we’re faced with fighting (all over again) TODAY! As you explore my “references” (above), you will find/be offered various other/aditional sources/resources either “free” or “cheaP”. I suggest that you setup a separate “designated” email account (under Yahoo, for example) to handle this INTAKE of stuff from unknon sources as you sort-&-sidt all this “new” stuff. Create “new folder(s)” for sources of evident future interest and “move” (to there) from Inbox, “unscubscribe” from the clearly obvious JUNK (and labe/delegate same to “SPAM”, also), and in this manner just keep chugging-along to expand your KNOWLEDGE BASE (and its RELIABLE/TRUSTED providers) while self-protecting yourself from CRAP & DRIVEL (from “clueless/ignorant”) parasites/leeches.

  82. Arem says:

    What do you think about term limits? Favor, absolutely!
    What are the pros and cons of term limits vs. the status quo system? There exist NO “pros” to the present system. The “cons” of the present system are fundamentally three: (1) it has engendered the unintended consequence of breeding the “career politician” species, whose term in office is devoted to gaining re-election rather than serving We The People and this Nation; (2) the “career politician” (so bred, and under the present system) lacks any/all manner off actual “connection” with both State constituents and the greater American Public; and, (3) a “career politician” (serving in this Nation’s capitol) was never intended by our Founding Fathers.
    Is this an “all or nothing” proposition, or should we consider allowing additional terms if high percentages of voters (popular votes not any of this Electoral College stuff) want a good person back in office? ALL OR NOTHING, absolutely! Why? The “good guy” (you reference, Shah) will know or soon learn that s/he needs to also serve as mentor to a hand-picked “successor” – who will then stand to election in order to carry-on the “good” of this Good Guy’s record of accomplishment/service to State AND Nation when “term limit” boots the incumbent adieu! [Sidebar, for Shah to contemplate: I think/suspect that you are ignoring the enormously important role(s) played by career “Congressional staffer”-type professionals (who are NOT subject to said “term limits”) as well as the role(s) played by the career “Civil Service”-type professionals (who are also NOT subject to said “term limits”) in both the day-to-week-to-month-to-quarter-to-year (et cetera) practical functioning of “government” AND ignoring the the effects and affects of “their” collective accretion of knowledge, experience and wisdom acquired “at the tip of the spear”. It’s one thing to “theorize” and “legislate” regarding POLICY (which is the role of elected office-holders), but another matter altogether to “effectively implement” such POLICY (which is the role of the Civil Service “worker ants” and Congressional staffer “worker bees”. Punting a/any elected office-holder out-of-work under “term limits” will have no NEGATIVE impact upon the welfare of this Nation (including its “security”), but many POSITIVE effects and affects will arise – most of which will be unexpected, unanticipated and thus on the order of “unintended consequences”.
    What are the unintended consequences we might face with term limits? My view is that only GOOD/POSITIVE “unintended consequences” will ensue. I perceive that your intent in posing this question (as “framed” by the earlier questions) is intentionally biased to provoke/elicit responses regarding NEGATIVE “unintended consequences”. I foresee NONE – but my “hat’s off” to you on this clever/cute ploy to generate/manipulate Comment/Opinion out of your readership, Shah – WELL DONE!

  83. Kevin Beck says:

    I am all in favor of term limits. I am also in favor of limiting the time Congress is in session, and limiting the use of Executive Orders. I also like tilting at windmills, and will speak out in favor of any idea that will reduce the problems that the political class does to the rest of the nation out of the sheer fact that they exist. Just look at the way the FAA acted over the sequester for an example of stupidity by default.

    Following along on the idea that corporate officers and directors can be held liable (but never seem to be) for their misdeeds, I think we need a similar requirement for any person acting in government affairs. To wit: Legislators, their aides, members of regulatory agencies, all members of the Executive Branch, should be subject to personal liability for their horrific legislating and rule-making. And since Amendment 7 sets a floor of $20 for damages that should be eligible for adjudication in court, then any action by those boobs that results in damages to any individual in excess of same $20 should be eligible for damages. And eliminate all terms that absolve these scum from liability because they were serving the government (civil service rules, government sovereignty protection, etc.) This would drastically reduce the quantity of never-do-wells that find an attraction to being bullies of their neighbors from such jobs where they can do so, such that almost no one would want those jobs, and those agencies related to those so-called jobs would die of attrition.

    I hope that works as an answer for the issue, Shah.

  84. Greg says:

    Before we address term limits, we need to develop a method of effectively evaluating the performance of our elected officials. Score high enough on the evaluation, gain the ability to run for office again. Score not high enough? Out at the end of the term.
    First, I feel that more could get done if we had fewer congressmen. Lets say no more than 4 per state, scaled down to a minimum of one per state for states with the lowest populations. With states that have 4 congressmen, they must represent geographical areas at least 150 miles apart; you can’t have 3 representatives in LA and 1 in San Diego.
    Second, we should assign a fee to lobbiests for access to our congressman. The price? The difference between the lobbiest’s CEO’s pay and that of our congressman. Make the check out to the the US Treasury.

  85. Martin says:

    Yes, like the President, two terms. But perhaps after a term or two out, they might return again (also Presidents) – there are a few talented and decent folks out there somewhere who we need in government…I think. But I also think they keep themselves too busy and they should follow Reagan’s little maxim: “don’t just do something, stand there” (well, they could play cards or something…). Whenever they do something, it seems to be wrong.

  86. Vern Rose says:

    Give me two or three years in Congress and I could make me and my backers multi millions on insider trading alone, not to mention all the other perks that go along with the job. That’s why I do not think term limits are the answer.

    Any amendment to the Constitution must take away all incentives to be corrupt. This alone would go a long way to providing all US citizens true representation.

    I would like to see a mandated system of scoring the voting record of our elected Congressmen. Much the same way the Council for Citizens Against Government Waste grades House and Senate members. Mandate their record be provided at any request and be on all campaign material.

    Make it easy for Statesmen to thrive and serve the best interest all US citizens.

    Vern Rose

  87. Norman says:

    I believe adopting term limits would only serve to shorten the trading cycle for those that invest in politicians. Limits would only serve to restrict our ability to vote for whomever we choose. We already have the right to limit anyone to only one term. What we need is a more active and better informed electorate. Attempting to create better politicians through legislation strikes me as being the wrong focus and not likely to bear fruit.

    Thanks for asking

  88. fredith says:

    Unintended consequence: the judicial branch of the US government would become increasingly weakened relative to the executive branch without some strong folks in the senate and HR. However, that said, there needs to be some change away from our current system and term limits need to be part of that change. Also, 12 year absolute limit in congress – 6 in HR can be followed by 6 in senate but no more than 12 total.

  89. fallingman says:

    Of course it’s the right thing to do.

    And who would have to pass it? The Congress.

    There’s as much chance of this happening as there is of a policeman arresting himself.

    You can get as worked up as you like. Ain’t gonna happen.

  90. Dennis B says:

    I agree term limits is the one thing we can do to benefit this country that will have the greatest impact on the Washington mess. Lots of other things also need changing; i.e., eliminating all the special perks and having congressmen live by the same rules we have to live by.

  91. GQ4U says:

    1) I like the concept of term limits but it does mean throwing out the baby with the bathwater. I’m okay with that because there are very few legislators worth keeping. This is not preserving democracy, it is saving the Republic. It will also be necessary to add term limits to the bureaucrats that work in Congress because a government full of newbies can be easily manipulated by a well entrenched staff.

    2) We need proper representation by overturning the congressional decision that limits the House to 435 Members. Each Congressman has over 750,000 constituents; it should be closer to 45,000.

    3) We need to restore State’s rights by returning selection of U.S. Senators to each State’s legislature. Senators were never meant to represent the people the House was. Senators are supposed to represent the State’s. By placing Senators on the ballot they are co-opted to please the majority of voters to get reelected. If restored to an appointed position Senators will do whats in the best interest of the State that sent them to D.C.

    4) Save the nations fiscal soundness by instituting a Constitutional amendment repealing all income taxes and instituting the FairTax.org plan which will dramatically increase investments in America.

    5) Pass a Constitutional amendment requiring that all candidates running for the office of President be vetted to ensure they meet all the Article II; Section I; Clause IV; requirements to be President and Vice-president.

    6) All legislators and their families must abide by every law they enact, including retirement based on the limitations of Social Security and Medicare. This should also include all Federal employees.

  92. Steve says:

    I don’believe we need term limits as much as accountability and forcing all politicians to live by the same rules as the rest of us. We should have publicly financed elections so all have the same financing and at least see if it will work. We also need a more involved electorate. The only way any of this will happen though is another revolutionary war and it’s just not bad enough yet.

  93. cynthia says:

    Term limits would seem to be part of the solution, otherwise why would
    the ‘electorates’ consistently reject these types of propositions over and over again.

  94. alcors says:

    I fully support term limits and also the modification of any and all benefits to be comparable with the benefit and retirement packages that congressional members have enacted into law

  95. Leslie Belden says:

    Once upon a time, term limits might have helped.

    But you know as well as I do that limiting the terms of marionettes and dummies is no answer–the schools and universities are turning them out faster than we could ever dispose of them now.

    How shall we limit the terms of their puppet-masters, in the Supreme Court, the Fed, Wall Street and the Banking Elite?

  96. G. A. says:

    It seems that most government problems of serious concern are fiscal in nature. If so, advocating for a balanced budget amendment would be more to the point, have fewer unintended consequences, and require less disruption of the Constitution.

  97. tim voigt says:

    Shah: Hear hear for the effort. I think the real problem is not the elected officials. Deep down they know they are just generalist guys with the ego and connections to be a plausible front man. The ones pulling the strings are all the staffers. Most spend their lives with multiple representatives or senators. These underlings are the ones who negiotiate in the backrooms and tell our reps what the bill really means. These are the ones that need to be sent packing…

  98. Patrick Kelly says:

    The Constitution of the United States ( No ” of America ” ) : 13th Ammendment :Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.
    The magic words : ” except ” & ” United States ” ( No ” of America “) . Example : Guantanamo Bay inmates

  99. Lou says:

    Term limits should be a Constitutional Ammendment. It should include the Supreme court as well. Also, to protect the integrity of free elections, political contributions should be limited to $500. No more $25,000 plate dinners, no more super PAC’s. The average citizen should determine political outcomes, not corportations, not billionaires. Additionally, no Bill should be written or passed that contains more the 50 pages (the average citizen should be able to read it in one day). Any more than that, and we can be sure they are stealing our money or freedom! God Bless America

  100. David Webster says:

    In theory, WE THE PEOPLE are the government. Ideally the best way to limit Congressional terms is at the ballot box. Term limits have some appeal. Realistically, many people in the good old USA have given up on voting. In Belgium if you do not vote you have to pay a large fine – $ 500 according to a friend of mine. This might seem appealing to some, but I don’t think it is a good idea. I think if we automatically limit all Congressional terms for everyone, we will do ourselves a great disservice by removing people who are doing a great job for the people and the country. If we could easily remove criminals in Congress, that would be good. There seem to be too many of them. If we had a provision to keep people in office who get a large majority of the vote, I think it might work. Ultimately, the whole idea of a representative Democratic Republic will only work if at least two things happen: 1. Get the criminals out of there – either at the ballot box or via courts. 2. People have to get involved and vote in all elections.

  101. Darcy says:

    As long as the current government is in power, this pattern will continue. You will need a revolution to make change happen now. And it will be painful.

  102. Charles says:

    Sirs :
    Where does the word ” Democracy ” appear in our Constitution ? What is the difference between a Democracy and a Constitutional Republic to which we pledge ? “and to the REBULIC ” Why were the Founding Father’s so fearful of a “democracy form of gov ? Proper truthful education is key to understanding which is key to wisdom.

  103. teresa says:

    The reason this has gone on so long is that we as a nation have become complacent. Those that have not have given up and now have a why bother nothing is going to change attitude. The why bother people look at those who decide if this will ever be passed and say yeah right they’re really going to take away their free money train. The government is one of a very few institutes in the United States that pays people to do nothing. Not only do they get paid to do nothing but they get free health care and large pensions for the rest of their lives for doing nothing but creating havoc and acting like five year old’s. If you can figure out a way to force them to actually pass a bill calling for cutting their money train off at a certain point I am all for it, but like many others I have to say, I’m not going to hold my breath. The fat cats have it to good to ever give up their power and money mongering.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


+ 3 = six

Protected by WP Anti Spam