Term Limits are Possible

We can do this.

We control Term Limits

Most of us are aware of some of our elected representatives who have been sitting in their chairs for far too long. We are also aware that term limits would prevent this from happening in the future, but are told they would be impossible to enact.

Many accept this statement about term limits being impossible, and sighs a little "Oh well" and forget about it.

My whole life, I have heard the saying, "There is more than one way to skin a cat." I happen to like cats, and have never seriously considered skinning a cat, so this saying didn't mean much to me.

When I take a hard look at many of our politicians who have overstayed their welcome in Washington, my first thought is term limits. Yet, I have been told it would take a constitutional amendment to put term limits in place for Congress. Most of us are smart enough to know this is most likely never going to happen. We are stuck with some of these guys and gals occupying that chair for 50 or more years of their lives, and our lives.

Well, it is we voters who keep putting them back in those chairs even though they have become less than useful for representing the wishes of "we the people."

Go back to skinning the cat and it now starts to make sense to me.

We can't get an amendment to the constitution to put term limits in place, but as voters we can skin that cat another way.


When you receive your pre-election voting material in the mail, your first job will be to read it and draw a line through every incumbent in the book. That's right, every one of them has to go that is up for re-election the first time around. This will accomplish a few things in just one election.

The next step will be to take a hard look at those candidates who would like to fill that position. Don't just look at the "D" or "R" in front of their name, but really look at whom they are and what they have accomplished in their private lives. If they have served in public office, check their voting records to see if it agrees with what their lips are spouting in their campaign promises.

We will clean out the deadwood and replace them with people willing to do the job.

With term limits, only those who are sincere about giving up a few years of their life to serve the citizens of this country will apply for the job. These candidates will not view the job as their new career or a get rich quick scheme. They know when they are elected the job is temporary, and they will be returning to their real life at the end of their term.

We will effectively cut at least some of the corruption out of government. The lobbyist's will not be as anxious to wine and dine or bribe an individual they know is only going to be there for a relatively short time. If they can't own them, they will leave them alone.

We will get some fresh blood with new ideas sitting in those chairs. The world is changing, but the thoughts in the heads of our career politicians remain the same.

Questions and Answers:

Q. What about my party loyalty doesn't that count?

A. It is party loyalty that has gotten us into the mess we are in today. If you love this country and want to save her, it is time to put your party loyalty aside and vote with your head for a change.

Q. What if I like my representative, I don't want to lose him or her?

A. Your representative would be free to run for any vacancy in another branch of government. If he or she did a good job representing the people, they would have no problem getting elected into a new position. They would also be eligible to run for their old job again after sitting out one term in office.

Q. What if my Union is pushing me to vote for the candidate they are supporting this year?

A. If you have to ask this question, perhaps it is time you grow up and take a look at what has happened to our country by letting others make the choice for you. Letting others buy or steal your precious vote is partly responsible for the sad state our government is in today.


We don't need official term limits in place to decide when it is time for any elected representative to pack their bags and go home. As voters, we have this power within our grasp right now, today, and far into the future.

Does the person you have continued to vote for so many terms in office have you, or your children, or grandchildren in mind when they make their decisions? After one term in office, their primary focus is on staying in that chair for as long as they can, and little or nothing else.

Based on our recent government shutdown, and the inability of our representatives to come to some form of compromise; it is apparent they are not doing their jobs. They are far more concerned with keeping that chair under their butt than they are in solving any of the problems we face today.

We are alarmed at the rapidly rising National Debt, yet we haven't had a budget for years. The only solution our representatives can arrive at is to borrow more money rather than looking at ways to reduce spending. That actually sounds like something a spoiled child would come up with for a solution.

We have the power to clean up this mess of a government, let's use it and see what happens. I can't see anything but positive results coming from a thorough house cleaning. It is time for us to let our elected representatives know we are taking back control of our future.

They had their chance and failed miserably, now it will be our turn.

Term Limits

Would you be willing to vote a long term incumbent out of office?

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Comments 30 comments

CMerritt profile image

CMerritt 3 years ago from Pendleton, Indiana

Mike, you nailed it.

We do NOT have to wait for any "change in our Constitution" to apply term limits.

Unfortunatly, too many people seem to think that THEIR officials is good, and others are bad. That official keeps bringing home some bacon from Washington and putting it in the troughs to feed the sheep.

(Actually, I think that is a poor analogy, because I don't think sheep eat bacon, but you know what I mean.)

I think you are right though, THAT is the best way to get a grip on our problems, is by sending folks who only plan on being there long enough to be a part of the solution, not making a career out of it.

Good hub!


Old Poolman profile image

Old Poolman 3 years ago from Rural Arizona Author

Thanks Chris, I have really strong feelings about this. If the last few weeks are any example of their performance, they all need to leave.

I dawned on me that we really do have control over how long they can stay in those chairs. We can fire whoever we want to at any election.

We don't need no stinking term limits, we already have them if we will just use them.

WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 3 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

We have discovered that those elected to Congress quickly shed the ideals that we voted for in exchange for the lure of inside-the-beltway elitism. I have lost all faith in any politician, and that's why our Founding Fathers gave us a Constitution...they knew that no one was to be trusted with all that power.

In addition to Mike's great idea, I think we should also make it far easier to boot elected politicians out of Washington. If we hire them, we should also be able to fire them if they get out of line. I don't want them to get too comfortable. I want them to nervously pay attention to We, the people, AKA: their bosses. If they don't like that, they should stay home!

Most Americans do not want Obamacare, but those who passed it do not care what We, the People want. We should have a better and easier way to deal with their arrogance

CMerritt profile image

CMerritt 3 years ago from Pendleton, Indiana

Right on Will.

I bet if we took away their HC plan, their retirment, all the perks they get, they would NOT be wanting to be re-elected. They are NOT supposed to be there for a career, but there to server their country, just as our Mililary men and women CHOOSE to do.

Old Poolman profile image

Old Poolman 3 years ago from Rural Arizona Author

WillStarr - For at least a year prior to any election, we are forced to sit and watch campaign promises on TV. Have you ever seen a scoreboard on how many of these promises were kept or were not kept? I haven't ever seen one that I can remember.

We should advise every candidate to not make the promise if they don't think they can keep it. With that warning we give them a time limit for success, or the date they need to pack their bags. Never in private industry is anyone allowed to make promise after promise they don't keep and still stay employed.

We have the power, we just need to use it.

Old Poolman profile image

Old Poolman 3 years ago from Rural Arizona Author

Chris - take away the perks and the big paychecks and we could end up with nobody running for office. WillStarr nailed it in his comment. We need the right to fire any that are not performing up to standard. If they are fired they forfeit all pay and benefits including retirement.

If any liberals read this please know that I dislike all of them equally regardless of sex, race, or political party.

The Frog Prince profile image

The Frog Prince 3 years ago from Arlington, TX

I've been an advocate for decades of "We' the People..." imposed term limits. They won't ever impose term limits on themselves.

If it ever got on as a national referendum it would pass easily.

What is astounding is that the majority of Americans favor term limits but fail to realize that we can enact it if they won't. It's called kick their butts to the curb. The other factor is money and we have that power too.

The Frog

WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 3 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

What would clear up 90% of this is to make a law that anyone receiving welfare forfeit their right to vote as long as they are on the dole.

That would cause Democrat politicians to distance themselves from welfare, and people on the dole could no longer vote themselves a free trough.

The Frog Prince profile image

The Frog Prince 3 years ago from Arlington, TX

Amen to Will!

billybuc profile image

billybuc 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

Good to see you writing more often; I sense the current mess in D.C. has you motivated. :)

I have no problem with term limits; I have no problem with voting 90% of Congress out of office tomorrow. If the politicians won't change then it is time for the voting public to wield their considerable power on the political arena.

I'm with you buddy!


profile image

Hxprof 3 years ago from Clearwater, Florida

Old Poolman- First, it's good to see you writing again. Second, I wish I shared your optimism about turning the country around; I don't share it, but if I DID I'd be in complete agreement with your strategy.

About 20 years ago I read a book review by a historian who summed up his thoughts about the Roman Senate by commenting that he didn't understand "why the Roman people never rose up and slaughtered the Senate". His statement (I wish I could remember his name) caused me to ask why Americans have never demanded enmasse that the government adhere to the constitution. Perhaps we're not so different from our predecessors - sadly we too lack the spine needed to force our government to listen to us. I wish it weren't so.

The Frog Prince profile image

The Frog Prince 3 years ago from Arlington, TX

billybuc - It needs to become like changing the diapers on a baby.

Old Poolman profile image

Old Poolman 3 years ago from Rural Arizona Author

FP - Hey Jim, great seeing you in the comment section of one of my hubs. Yes, we do have the power if we will just use it. I can see this as a mantra that even the most ill informed voters could understand.

It would be awesome if we could get this message spread before the next election.

tsadjatko profile image

tsadjatko 3 years ago from maybe (the guy or girl) next door

Well Mike, all you have to do is lobby the congress and show them how elected officials can line their own pockets 5 times faster than being a career politician, they can retire young and not have to lie for thirty years...yep that would do it.

Old Poolman profile image

Old Poolman 3 years ago from Rural Arizona Author

WillStarr - That sounds like a heck of a good thing to add to my plan. I just received a ballot to vote on the Florence school district wanting to raise their operating budget. Since this money comes from property taxes, why should anyone who doesn't own property get to vote?

I'm starting to think life just isn't fair anymore.

Old Poolman profile image

Old Poolman 3 years ago from Rural Arizona Author

billybuc - Always a pleasure my friend. It would seem we have a great many fair weather politicians filling the halls of Congress. They do just fine as long as there are no important issues to vote on, or heaven forbid they need to compromise and meet in the middle.

They need to go home and learn some new skills, then perhaps we would take them back.

I'm glad to see you are with me on this issue.

Old Poolman profile image

Old Poolman 3 years ago from Rural Arizona Author

Hxprof _ Very interesting comment regarding the Roman Senate. We are most likely feeling about the same as the Romans felt about their so called leaders.

What we lack on our end is leadership. The Politicians have their own leaders that guide them the way they want them to go. Now we need a true leader of the citizens to do the same for us. We are actually starting to see more peaceful protests in Washington, which means that many are ready for a big change. I hope and pray it doesn't escalate to violent protest, but that could happen if nothing gets fixed.

People are tired of getting the runaround, and paying more and more taxes due to the incompetence in Washington.

Old Poolman profile image

Old Poolman 3 years ago from Rural Arizona Author

tsadjatko - Your idea might work even better. I would bet if we ever had an election where a large percentage of the incumbents lost their job, it would wake up those who remain. Heck, they might even start doing what we pay them to do.

tsadjatko profile image

tsadjatko 3 years ago from maybe (the guy or girl) next door

Term limits, accountability, debt limits, spending cuts, salary cuts, balanced budget - these things will never happen unless we vote almost all of them out which will never happen with this tainted electorate. The politicians are in a position to increase their power every year, why would they ever concede it by adopting any of these measures? Those honorable politicians who would are too few and far between. I'm afraid we are not on the edge of disaster, we went over the edge long ago and have been falling...just haven't crashed yet.

Old Poolman profile image

Old Poolman 3 years ago from Rural Arizona Author

tsadjatko - It sure seems like that doesn't it? I love seeing the beginnings of some peaceful protests. That indicates to me that more and more are getting fed up enough to step out of their comfort zone.

We know that a large percentage don't have a clue, and as long as the government continues to pour slop in the trough for them they are happy. They will always be there and it makes no sense to try to educate them.

It will be interesting to see how this all plays out.

breakfastpop profile image

breakfastpop 3 years ago

Amen! It is time that we remembered that we, the people, are the government. We can make sure that there are term limits by being an informed electorate. The only problem I foresee is that, to be honest, all those who put Obama in office are the kind of voters we don't need. Great hub!

Old Poolman profile image

Old Poolman 3 years ago from Rural Arizona Author

Thanks Patti, I really appreciate you stopping by.

lmmartin profile image

lmmartin 3 years ago from Alberta and Florida

Hi Old Poolman. Yours are some of the few hubs I make a point of reading. Always enjoy your insights and this hub is certainly no exception. I couldn't agree more with the idea of term limits. We need to do away with the idea of the "professional politician" and get back to citizens serving their country and then returning to private life. For one thing, life-long politicians have lost touch and empathy for the majority of their citizen-constituents, have no idea of how most of us live and come to believe they deserve the largess and perks that come with the job. As for political-party loyalty, I know people that won't even talk to those from the "other side." I sense that (using the Republicans as an example, only) they could fly Mickey Mouse as a candidate and the party loyal would vote accordingly. People need to learn to look at the issues and platforms and make decisions not based on party, nor on emotional reactions to a personality but on who is best fit to do the job. Lynda

Old Poolman profile image

Old Poolman 3 years ago from Rural Arizona Author

Lynda - It is always a pleasure to have you stop by. Your comment is very fitting for the situation we find ourselves in today.

This darn misguided party loyalty is doing more to hurt this country than anything else. It is a shame they even have to list a candidates party on the pre-election material they send out. That would force us to actually read about the candidates qualifications for the job.

I am convinced it is past the time for some of our long term politicians to go home.

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geordmc 3 years ago from Beliot, Wisconsin

Good to see you back OP. I agree we need term limits for congress and senate. I've tried to vote out incumbents before, but it seems that some of these lying a-holes we call politicians sway enough votes to stay put. I would personally love to go to D.C. and fire them. Then have them ESCORTED out of the city.

Old Poolman profile image

Old Poolman 3 years ago from Rural Arizona Author

geordmc - Thanks, good to see you again.

It would be great if we could charter a couple large buses, go to Washington and just load up all of those that need to leave. Heck, Detroit could use some more tax paying residents, we could send them there.

It is really voter apathy and ignorance that keeps these people in office. And that is a battle we may never win.

FitnezzJim profile image

FitnezzJim 3 years ago from Fredericksburg, Virginia

Perhaps it is time to induce the same chaos in government that the government has induced in us. Everybody vote Libertarian.

Old Poolman profile image

Old Poolman 3 years ago from Rural Arizona Author

Jim, It will take something like you suggest to get this train back on the tracks. Just one election where a whole bunch of them got replaced would change the way things are handled in Washington. Those that remain would actually start earning their pay.

Until people start paying attention and voting for the best candidate rather than their party, their race, their sex, or there personal wishes it will never change. Just because a candidate has nice hair doesn't mean he or she is qualified to do the job.

ValdyrGlory profile image

ValdyrGlory 3 years ago from Atlanta

I could agree to this, and I describe myself as a progressive. The longer that a person is in office, and the more secure they feel about it, the more likely they are to start listening to the lobby, rather than their constituency.

Old Poolman profile image

Old Poolman 3 years ago from Rural Arizona Author

I think you are correct on this. Thanks for stopping by.

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