The Twenty-second Amendment sets term limits for the President of the United States, but the question I have to ask is why don’t members of the House of Representatives or Senate have term limits as well?
To serve in public office is not a career, nor should it be. It should be an honor to serve your country, but sadly our Congress has turned it into a place for them to take care of themselves first and if they get around to us they may do something. Congress is only in session for 137 days a year and even less in election years which with the House Of Representatives up for re-election every two years that means they do that 137 day work year every other year. Let’s just put that in a bit of prospective a normal working person, even with 2 weeks vacation a year works on average 200 days a year. In our current Congress out of the 535 members 102 have been in office for twenty years or more. If you include those who have been in the House of Representative as well as the Senate that goes up to 121 or 22.6%.
Now I am not saying you can’t have good ideas after twenty years, but honestly if you are doing that you have probably lost the plot on why you are there to begin with. I think we have proven over the years that after 8 years we are normally tired of our President, so you can only imagine what we feel after knowing they have been in Congress for 20 years and yet we the people are not seeing a positive result.
I believe there are a few things we can do to make sure that this representative government actually stays representative. Start off by making Senate terms four years each instead of the current six, and half of the Senate is up for re-election every two years. You can leave the House of Representatives at two years. Here is how you make it fair: Senate has a two term limit, same as the President, and House of Representatives has a three term limit. One other thing that should be done is that there is a sixteen year limit to how long you can serve the Federal Government in an elected position. So if you do six years in the House and eight years in the Senate, you are not allowed to run for President because you would not have the time left to serve out your term.
Another thing I believe that should be done to make it easier for the common man to run for election is to end Super PACs. You may raise up to $1,000,000 to run for Congress and not a dollar more. You may raise up to $5,000,000 to run for Senate and you may raise up to $250,000,000 to run for President. Show the people you are wanting to represent you can do more to less. This will cause more grassroots elections, take the lobbyists out of the election and give the process back to the people. You can keep the donation limits as they currently are. In the case, such as with Trump who financed his own campaign, he too would only be allowed to use up to $250,000,000 of his money maximum, in combination of donations. So for example if the people donated $150,000,000 he would only be allowed to spend $100,000,000 of his own money. Between the primaries and general election in 2016, there will be well over $3 Billion spent. That is an insane waste of money.
The thing that this election process has proven is that there is major discontent with our current Congress, and their 13.2% approval rating proves that. I believe that term limits, campaign finance reform and ending any benefits when they leave office will cut down on corruption, complacency and us against them mentality we currently have.
As always, comments are welcome