Term Limits are Possible

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There is a way.....

Most of us are discouraged, disgusted, and fed up with our politicians who just can't seem to get anything accomplished other than collecting their salaries and benefits. This is nothing new, it has been going on for many administrations with no change in sight.

We keep hearing of Term Limits being the obvious solution to this problem. The problem is it is the very politicians who would lose their jobs that would need to impose Term Limits that would put them out of a job. I seriously doubt they would view Term Limits very favorably.

Now picture a bumper sticker on the car you are following down the road that says "If you're in, you're out!"

You wonder what that means and then it dawns on you. It means we citizens with the right to vote can impose Term Limits anytime we want to.

These elected positions were never intended to be a lifetime career. They were intended to be filled by citizens with something to offer volunteering a few years of their life for the good of the country. They serve us for one term, then go back to their normal life.

By the time a politician has served two terms in office, they owe so many favors they have lost their objectivity. Campaigns are expensive and they willingly took campaign contributions with strings attached. They are no longer able to serve the citizens of this country because they have been bought and paid for by campaign contributors and lobbyists.


1. Corruption would be greatly reduced. Lobbyists and large corporations would not be as interested in donating money to an individual who would only be around for a relatively short time.

2. Senility would not affect the decision making process of a much younger representative who has not spent the majority of his or her life sitting in a chair in Congress.

3. Fresh ideas and a willingness to work for the common good of the people would be more prevalent.

4. The agony we endure watching the political smear ads on TV for an entire year would at least be reduced.

5. New representatives without years of built up resentment would be more willing to reach across the aisle and work with compromise to actually resolve problems.


1. I can't think of any, could it be any worse?


This change would require a complete change of thinking on the part of we voters. We would no longer pay attention to the "D" or "R" in front of the candidates name. OK, if you just can't bring yourself to forget the "D" or "R", at least vote for the new guy in your party.

Our red flag would be the length of time any candidate has been warming the chair. After two terms in office they are no longer effective and need to go home.

The point of this hub is to make everyone aware that we do have the power to invoke Term Limits if we will just use it at the voting booth. Your right to vote is a precious thing, don't waste it out of misguided loyalty to someone who is not doing the job we pay them to do.

Could you do it?

Could you vote to get rid of the dead weight filling the chairs of Congress?

See results without voting

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Comments 25 comments

billybuc profile image

billybuc 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

Of course I would do it and will do it...it's the other 100 million I'm worried about. I don't know when complacency took over this country, but it is alive and well. Maybe as a society we have just given up all hope....I sure hope we haven't. If people are fed up, then they need to use the system to change the system. Not too difficult at all, if enough people will do it.

I love your idea my friend. I just don't have much faith in the voting public right now. :)

Old Poolman profile image

Old Poolman 2 years ago from Rural Arizona Author

Bill, I am with you my friend. We do have the power to change things but don't do it. That is very frustrating for me.

The Frog Prince profile image

The Frog Prince 2 years ago from Arlington, TX

The poll questions is a no brainer Mike. What we need to impose our own term limits is an informed electorate. I am an advocate of developing a real easy "take to vote" test before you can be registered and also removing any party affiliation form the ballots.


Writer David profile image

Writer David 2 years ago from Mobile, AL

Inherently, people are creatures of habit. They think the guy that has been in office 20 plus years must be doing something right. We live in the age of the Low Information Voter. The LIVs have given us the most dangerous president in the history of this nation. You tell the LIV to vote for Mr or Mrs X, they do it, no questions asked. People are not willing to go against the grain. Thusly, I fully support some form of term limits. Two terms for U.S. Senators, 3 terms for U.S. House Reps. That's enough. The problems of career politicians is plaguing us today with catering to special interests and not the American people. Politicians will not vote themselves out of office. So, they will never introduce such a bill. It would take a national referendum to do this. I do believe the majority of LEGAL voting U.S. citizens would vote for term limits. At least, I hope so.

WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 2 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

I've always been torn on this one because it also means that we could not reelect a very good representative, but your arguments are so persuasive that I find myself in full agreement.

The problem, of course, is getting the culprits to limit themselves! It would probably take an amendment, and We, the People would probably have to initiate and pass it ourselves.

Excellent Hub, Mike!

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retief2000 2 years ago

It is the power that government wields that draws the money from lobbyists and corporations. Devolve that power back to the people and the states and watch the corruption ebb. If there is higher turn over in office I think it is far more likely that even more money and pressure will be brought to bear on politicians.

There is nothing holy about politicians or businesses, both are corrupted by the allure and actuality of power. The Federal government has become more and more powerful and more and more corrupt, there is a correlation.

Old Poolman profile image

Old Poolman 2 years ago from Rural Arizona Author

Jim - I love your ideas but the idea of having a test to vote would keep many away from the polls for good. The man-in-the-street interviews is a clear indicator that many should not be voting anyhow.

If the party affiliation were removed from the ballot then many would have to go by hair color, smile, height and weight, or some other equally ridiculous means of picking a candidate.

Never will many even look at a candidates voting record or even their attendance record.

Old Poolman profile image

Old Poolman 2 years ago from Rural Arizona Author

Writer David - It would be interesting if the Term Limits issue would ever be put on the ballot what the results would be. I'll bet there would be some real politicing going on prior to that election.

Thanks for stopping by and the great comment.

Old Poolman profile image

Old Poolman 2 years ago from Rural Arizona Author

WillStarr - Yes, we might lose a good one from time to time, but we would sure be getting rid of a pile of bad one's. We could do it like they do in Costa Rica where after they sit out one term they can go back on the ballot. If they did a good job on their first term they might get elected again.

If the voters would just refuse to vote for anyone currently in office we could do this without any referendum or amendment.

We have the power to create term limits if the voters will just wake up and do what is right.

Old Poolman profile image

Old Poolman 2 years ago from Rural Arizona Author

retief2000 - You are very correct. Big business owns most of our government today. Far too many of our current elected representatives are bought and paid for by big business. The lobbyists would try to immediately buy some of the new guys and might even be able to do so if the price was right. But we could eliminate that particular politician at the next election if the voters were aware of his selling out.

I'm just saying that we citizens do have the power and the means to clean up some of the corruption if we would just use our heads and vote right.

twayneking profile image

twayneking 2 years ago from Puyallup, WA

I face the same problem a lot of folk do. I've voted for two Congressmen in Texas who keep doing a good job for me and seem to be voices crying in the wilderness sometimes - Joe Barton & Louis Gohmert. I'd hate to lose them, especially knowing what kind of Democrats tend to run in that neck of the woods - God help us if one of those moonbats were elected. It's fear of that which keeps us from "tossing out the brutes". Term limits would force out the dead weight certainly, but it would also mean forcing out the crafty old warriors we rely on to keep the country from sinking into complete madness. Another problem is that unknown candidates would need even more money to make themselves known enough to win the seat and that might make the fat cats even more influential in the selection process. Otherwise, we could wind up with a succession of minor celebrities who win their seats backed by corporate dollars and with their victory based on little more than their public name recognition - Sonny, Gopher and Radar followed by Hawkeye, Chrissy, Tom Cruise and Mrs. Brady. Won wonders if the pressure to make a name could bring even more lobbyist influence rather than less.

I do think that if it's good enough for the president, it should be good enough for the rest of them, though. Let's drop the retirement plan altogether. That ought to reduce the field somewhat. Let them serve either early enough in their careers that they still have time to earn a retirement nest egg after they leave Congress or at the end of their careers when they've already earned some experience and put away enough that they don't need it. four to eight years ought to just about do it. Just sayin'

WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 2 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

One thing we could do to reduce the buying of votes would be to block those who get 'free stuff' from government from voting until they have been off the government dole for at least two years.

(That would not include stuff we pay for all our lives, like social Security and Medicare.)

Old Poolman profile image

Old Poolman 2 years ago from Rural Arizona Author

twayneking - You make some very valid points in you comment and I have to agree with you. Off the top of my head, I can't name any elected representatives in Arizona that deserve another term, but I am sure there are a few good guys from other states.

My thinking is that leaving any of the old guard would make it easier to corrupt the new blood coming into Congress. Perhaps my thinking is overkill but I would like to see them all limited in how long they can stay in office.

The current retirement plan does need to be changed. We will still have to pay those leaving office under the terms of the old plan, but the new guys would not be able to live off the taxpayers for the remainder of their lives. The problem is the very one's who could change this plan are the same one's who would be affected by the change, just like with term limits.

Thanks for stopping by and the great comment.

Old Poolman profile image

Old Poolman 2 years ago from Rural Arizona Author

That sounds good to me WillStarr, but then we would also have to block all of the dead people from voting and that would be discrimination.

FitnezzJim profile image

FitnezzJim 2 years ago from Fredericksburg, Virginia

For some reason, voters appear to be more likely to impose term limits more on Representatives than on Senators. Perhaps the two year cycle for them is already short enough that we remember. For Senators, yeah, vote them out. Six years is too long. Recycle every time. That seems to be the best way to break the partisan type hold that currently exists in the Senate. It also may be the only way to break the power of the partisan form of government.

Old Poolman profile image

Old Poolman 2 years ago from Rural Arizona Author

Jim, I actually meant all of them including Senators. In my mind, the only way we will ever break the stalemate that stalls every decision is to replace all of the players. We have identified the problem, now all we have to do is resolve it.

Good to see you on here, thanks for the comment.

breakfastpop profile image

breakfastpop 2 years ago

I have every intention of following your wise advice. I say clean house! Great hub, Mike. It's wonderful to read your work. Voted up, useful in the right hand, interesting and totally awesome.

Old Poolman profile image

Old Poolman 2 years ago from Rural Arizona Author

Patti - Great to see you my friend. Once in awhile something gets me angry enough to write about. This was one of those cases because many of our politicians are laughing at us thinking they can stay as long as they choose to stay and there is nothing we can do about it. It is long beyond time for us to show them we do have some control when we go to the voting booth. All it would take would be one really good housecleaning and their replacements would be more eager to do a good job for us.

Thanks for stopping by, you made my day.


breakfastpop profile image

breakfastpop 2 years ago

Dear Mike,

You always make my day !

Mel Carriere profile image

Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

That was brilliantly stated my friend. The job is so dirty that even Mother Theresa would be corrupted after one go round. I agree with you completely. Kick the b******* out and give Congress back to the people. Great hub!

Old Poolman profile image

Old Poolman 2 years ago from Rural Arizona Author

Mel - indeed a pleasure to have you stop by and take the time to comment. My point of this style of thinking is that many have just given up and are willing to accept whatever path our Government chooses for us. I just don't happen to be one of them.

We have an awesome power with our voting rights, but unfortunately we have not been using them wisely.

We have some very rotten apples in our barrel and the whole lot needs to be thrown out and replaced. Yes, we will waste a few good apples in the process, but we will know for sure that the rotten apples are all gone, at least for awhile.

Now how do we get the voters to use their votes wisely?

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Hxprof 2 years ago from Clearwater, Florida

I would like to have seen a constitutional convention back in the 90's that could have passed numerous amendments to reign in the power of the federal government, stripping it of many of the unconstitutional powers it has taken during the last century. A term limits amendment could also have been passed.

Sadly though, IMO we're witnessing the final years of this country - not that other countries are doing much better. Thanks for the article OP.

Old Poolman profile image

Old Poolman 2 years ago from Rural Arizona Author

Hxprof - I appreciate and agree with your comment. We are sliding downhill at a rapidly accelerating rate. I firmly believe we now have so many rotten apples in the barrel we have no choice other than dumping the whole barrel and starting fresh.

Yes, the few good apples remaining will suffer the same fate as the rotten apples, but there is no easy way to sort them out.

The voters just have to wake up and take action at the polls if we have any hope of saving what is left of this country.

Perspycacious profile image

Perspycacious 2 years ago from Today's America and The World Beyond

As much as I find this suggestion of value, take my problem for instance: Republican Rep. Jason Chaffetz is a relatively young man and a likely future successor to long, long, long time Senator Hatch, now 4th in line for the Presidency, president pro-temp of the Senate, and Chairman of the Senate Finance Committee. Chaffetz' opponent was ill-prepared to run for office. His TV debate with Chaffetz showed that clearly. There was no valid reason to choose that candidate the Democrats put up, except to get rid of Chaffetz who is holding Obama and H. Clinton's feet to the fire over Bengazhi.

We need term limits. No argument from me on that, except that a carte blanche "throw the bums out" could end up throwing out the "good" with the "awful" and ending up with something worse in the name of progress.

Old Poolman profile image

Old Poolman 2 years ago from Rural Arizona Author

Perspycacious - And I agree with you. Most of us have our favorites we would not want to see go. But how do we sort them out? We have no real idea as to which of them have sold their souls and which are still honest and trying to represent the people. My proposal of course would never happen but a completely fresh start might be a good thing. These jobs were originally held by citizens with something to offer, then they went back to their real lives. It was never intended to have career politicians like we have today.

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