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05-17-2010, 03:45 PM #1
How can we impose Term Limits on Congress???
I think it's become obvious to people on both sides of the political spectrum that our system ain't quite right anymore. Something's gone astray. The people we've chosen to drive the car are busying themselves with arguing semantics rather than DRIVING, plus they've been doing a REALLY lousy job of maintaining the car and haven't changed the oil or lubed the chassis in like a dozen years or more....and now the car is BROKEN. We need to fix it ourselves!
One viable solution: TERM LIMITS for Senate and House of Representatives. Presently there are NO term limits. A Senator could basically be there for "life". It is well-known that long-term incumbants almost always have the upper-hand during elections, no matter how old or feeble-minded they become. Even when they aren't there for 40 years, they still spend an inordinate amount of time "electioneering". I think lack of term limits just increases pork-barreling, as the politicians add pork to their local causes so that they can continue to get elected.
It's no secret that being a Senator is a sweet life. Limousine, two homes, one paid for by the government, fancy black-tie galas, lots of presumed power...who on earth would want to quit and go back to being Joe Smoe? But the reality is it's no good for getting things done, and lethargy eventually ensues, to OUR detriment.
We need term limits, AND aggregate term limits, at that.
I am not sure, but I think "terms" are written into the Constitution, and so any change would have to be by Amendment. The problem is who votes on Amendments? That's right....Congress.
I think the only solution would be a nation-wide ballot initiative about term limits.
But how does one INITIATE a ballot initiative??? I think such an initiative has to be first okayed by Congress before it is even put ON a nation-wide ballot. Or maybe (hopefully) I am wrong. If I am right, then that basically means we're screwed. Our hands our effectively tied.
I heard someone say that we should all get together next election and vote AGAINST every single incumbant, be they repubs or dems. But you know as well as I do, that we can never 100% as a populace agree on ANYTHING, let alone something as altogether substantially progressive as THAT. Besides, without term limits, the people voted in to replace the incumbants would soon grow to like the power and priviledge and want to stay as well...decade after decade aftewr decade.
Any ideas on how to initiate a Term-Limit ballot initiative?`
Last edited by Alaskan Rover; 05-17-2010 at 03:56 PM.
05-17-2010, 03:55 PM #2
Hmmmmm...let me take a shot here...VOTE THEM OUT, term limits are all ready there, its just that most voting people think the only "bad" politician is the other guys and they refuse to think or follow what the person they voted in ever does.
VOTE THEM OUT....pretty simple, that way they know they screwed up
05-17-2010, 04:01 PM #3
There is no such thing as a national ballot initiative. The folks can't directly impact federal laws like they can is some states.
05-17-2010, 04:09 PM #4
Alaskan Rover, It would take a nationally coordinated effort to elect candidates that would agree to an amendment vote on term limits and have it make it to the floor. Basically you'd need to vote out any member who opposed the measure. Good damn luck with that."You damn colonials and your herds of tax write off dressage ponies". PNWBrit
05-17-2010, 04:12 PM #5
farmguy, we have some term limits, but not nearly enough.
the senate, house, and supreme court can all hold their positions until the day they die.
personally i would rather have no term limits on the POTUS and term limits on congress, than vice versa.Cheap gear for Mags at Backcountry Freeskier
05-17-2010, 04:12 PM #6?
- Join Date
- Jul 2005
- Verdi NV
Only way is Vote them out
And Yea it is a problem. Senators are a 6 year Term. Way too many Carrier Senators.
Why do people keep voting them back into office?
I think 12 years is more than enough time in Washington.Own your fail. ~Jer~
05-17-2010, 04:27 PM #7Way too many Carrier Senators.
05-17-2010, 04:28 PM #8
Most incumbents that lose elections lose to members of the other party. This year is interesting because several sitting Democrats and Republicans are being voted out in their primaries.
Let's turn it around - let's say you reeeeally like your Senator, they have done much good for your state and possibly you personally... it does happen you know. Por Ejemplo Kennedy in MA, Byrd in WV, Biden in DE, and Mikulski in MD never had an honest to goodness challenger from within their party. That's not due to voter ennui - those Senators were genuinely liked by their constituents. I'm sure there are examples on the other side of the aisle as well, especially guys like Shelby from AL. Wouldn't you think it's a freedom of speech issue when others decide that you are no longer allowed to vote for them?
05-17-2010, 04:38 PM #9
Nope, I don't care. Holding national political office is not supposed to be a career. There is always someone who can come along and do the job just as well. If we had term limits you wouldn't have the parliamentary abuse that goes on with people who've learned to work the system.
You wouldn't have the stranglehold of long term senators over the rest of the flock.
I doubt the reason is because they were so well liked. I call total bullshit on that. These guys don't hold their offices by being nice guys. They and the party squash many attempts before the voters ever see the first trial balloons by potential opponents.
No term limits are definitely needed along with roll backs on congressional perks and pensions !!!!!
I have problems with any of these people no matter party affiliation who stay in Washington more than 10-12 years."You damn colonials and your herds of tax write off dressage ponies". PNWBrit
05-17-2010, 05:06 PM #10
Term limits are a bandaid. The real problem is the apathy of the American voter which results in the lack of educated voting decisions. If my Senator or Representative is truly doing a great job, then I should be able to vote him or her into office as many terms as I please. It is the job each and every voter (and the press also) to keep them honest. The failure is ultimately ours. Especially when we give a known thief another term. Term limits merely pass the blame, which is of course the American Way nowadays."I knew in an instant that the three dollars I had spent on wine would not go to waste."
05-17-2010, 05:19 PM #11
The only thing I see the press do any more is lob softballs to democrats and spit balls at republicans !!
Other than that I agree about voter apathy, but that's exactly why we need term limits to keep some of the people who've entrenched themselves in Congress from doing that."You damn colonials and your herds of tax write off dressage ponies". PNWBrit
05-17-2010, 05:59 PM #12
The mainstream press doesn't do their job anymore, because we don't care if they do their job anymore. So they get used in the whole process. 60 Minutes may have broken a great story on BP yesterday, but that's probably because BP doesn't have commercial spots on CBS anymore. As opposed to say Philip Morris who bought tons of airtime and managed to bury Jeff Wigand's interview.
But yay for media consolidation which put tv and radio stations under increasingly consolidated mega corps that are increasingly connected to those companies and the representatives that those companies have bought.
The problem here is that we as a people have decided to sit back and feed the machine as opposed to actively taking control of it.
But hey, let's impose term limits. I'm sure that will fix the problem. Especially now that corporations can dump unlimited amounts of money into individuals compaigns. I mean, it's not like they can just buy the next guy...
Oh and before you start calling me granola boy who wants to see capitalism erased, you should know that I feel that business should have input into our political system. A healthy economy is an undeniable benefit to the people. That said, we're wayyyyyy out of balance right now; but we have no one but ourselves to blame because we've been complicit in feeding the current status quo."I knew in an instant that the three dollars I had spent on wine would not go to waste."
05-17-2010, 06:01 PM #13
05-17-2010, 06:11 PM #14
If the big three had been doing what they used to do years ago (hold every politicians feet to the fire) FOX would never have come along and stolen market share from them so easily.
No I wouldn't call you granola boy, but I damn sure don't agree business should have any say in our political system. A business can't vote and hence should not be accorded any part of the system.
Now a business does have interests, and should be able to lobby those positions, but it should not be allowed to give trips, junkets, fishing trips, golf outings, political donations at all, or any other sweet little perks that might persuade a congressman to vote for their power plant fired by unborn puppy fetuses."You damn colonials and your herds of tax write off dressage ponies". PNWBrit
05-17-2010, 06:28 PM #15"I knew in an instant that the three dollars I had spent on wine would not go to waste."
05-17-2010, 06:37 PM #16
I'm against term limits.
1. Just one more way to take the voter off the hook and allow him to be even stupider.
2. Once you hit your last "lame duck" term, you are unaccountable to the voters. You are 100% owned by your ideology, lobbyists and/or special interests.
3. Why automatically shit-can someone who actually doesn't suck?
05-17-2010, 06:43 PM #17
I don't agree with the lame duck theory on this one. I think you'd actually get people who want to serve as a public service and move on, thus they're gonna do the right thing whenever possible."You damn colonials and your herds of tax write off dressage ponies". PNWBrit
05-17-2010, 07:44 PM #18
2: There is some merit to your lame-duck analysis, but that effect can be lessened substantially by decreasing the leverage that lobbyists and special-interest groups have in the D.C. arena.
3: It wouldn't necessarily be 'shit-canning' them. They would simply reach the end of there pre-acknowledged term limit. It would't be shit-canning them anymore than it would be shit-canning a good president.
The 'Powers that be' saw that it was very important to ensure that such an important seat as the President had a limit to his time on that seat.
The same 'Powers that be', however, neglected to put term limits on what is aggregately another VERY important group of seats: Congress.
Why? Because the said 'Powers that be' WAS Congress.
Hmmmm, nice for those old codgers! They just ensured their own political longevity!
Last edited by Alaskan Rover; 05-17-2010 at 11:08 PM.
05-17-2010, 09:42 PM #19
The solution isn't to limit lobbying. Who decides the limit? The founders never intended the government to be involved up to their eyeballs in every possible aspect of life for a reason. If the government weren't involved, there wouldn't be a need for so many lobbyists in the first place. The only solution to government oversteping isn't term limits. It's telling the entire government to back the fuck off like the founders intended. As usual, the founders knew the future and tried to set up a system to prevent what we are bitching about in this thread. We continue to ignore their intentions to our detrement
05-18-2010, 10:40 AM #20
They knew the future ?
The word "airplane is nowhere in the Constitution. So how come my tax dollars are paying for Air Traffic Controllers ?
And that pothole in my street. The word "asphalt" is not in the Constitution, I guess that's why the county road crew won't fix it.
05-18-2010, 11:16 AM #21
05-18-2010, 04:52 PM #22
The founder knew human nature and what government will always try to become. The were 100% right. Technology changes. Human nature does not. The founders learned from history. They tried to warn us. Arrogant and ignorant are those who deny the eternal wisdom of the Dead White Racists.
05-19-2010, 02:18 AM #23
05-19-2010, 08:32 AM #24
So basically your goal is to ensure that politicians are corrupt and inexperienced? It seems pretty rare that some new Legislator makes his way to Washington and everyone says "wow, that guy's doing an awesome job."
Not saying there isn't a problem, just saying that term limits won't fix it.
05-19-2010, 09:32 AM #25
So here is an odd idea that will never be approved. Why elected officials? In most cases to get elected, you have to sell your soul to whatever PAC, lobbyist group, whatever to raise the cash to advertise to win.
Like jury duty, why are not all college educated people put into a random drawing to "do their duty as citizens". No more career politicians, every state and Federal rep is limited to a 4 year term. Every constituent has the right to log into the internet site for their rep and vote on the reps behalf. Meaning, if there is something up to be voted on, the constituents vote on how they want their rep to vote. Majority wins.
That is how you give honest representation back to the people.