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Term Limits

It seems to me that the arguments advocating the introduction of presidential term limits that led to the Twenty-Second Amendment seem to serve just as well here as they did in 1947, primarily concerns regarding the potential issues surrounding congressional officers serving an unlimited number of terms. There are probably additional, lesser-known concerns but it seems to me that the longer a congressional officer has served, the farther removed that officer becomes from the actual needs of their constituency. Of course, since I have never served in a political office, I can only presume this based on exterior observations.

Unfortunately, the only significant method to enact Congressional term limits is to pass a Constitutional amendment. These are not something to be proposed on a whim based on the vagaries of public opinion. In point of fact, the single amendment that was so ratified was later repealed. However, there appears to be enough popular support for an attempt, at a minimum, to propose a constitutional amendment for this topic that I propose the following (using the terms of the Twenty-Second Amendment as a guideline):

  • Two elected terms (consecutive or non-consecutive) for Senators. If the Senator spends more than three years filling a vacancy held by a previously elected senator, then that Senator can only be elected once. This limits a possible Senatorial career to a total of fifteen years.
  • Five elected terms (consecutive or non-consecutive) for Representatives. If the Representative spends more than one year filling a vacancy held by a previously elected Representative, then that Representative can only be elected four times. This limits the possible Representative career to a total of eleven years.

I realize that the topic is likely to be incendiary to congressional colleagues, and that it will not endear any generosity within the halls of Congress to anyone who actually proposes it to Congress, but the issue is a prominent topic of discussion across multiple political groups. Personally, I believe that this proposal treads a centrist path that ameliorates any extreme position on the issue.

Committee to Elect Darren Hamilton
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