General Question

pikipupiba's avatar

Should congressmen have term limits too?

Asked by pikipupiba (1629points) August 7th, 2009

We have term limits on presidents for a reason.

What’s to stop a congressman from rigging his own election every term and staying for life?

EDIT: Okay, maybe not rigging, but there are reasons for presidential term limits, why not congress?

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17 Answers

barumonkey's avatar

“What’s to stop a congressman from rigging…”

The same stuff that’s there to stop newcomers from rigging elections.

chyna's avatar

Same thing for senators. WV has the oldest (92) and the longest held office (50 years) Senator Robert C. Byrd. I think he should have retired somewhere in his early 70’s and I think he is not even capable of making a decision, that his staff is really running the show for him. It is pitiful to see him on TV, he can barely speak or walk. I think he is keeping an office that a younger, energetic, intelligent person should be able to have. Retirement age should be mandatory for them as well as a limit on the number of terms.

Judi's avatar

I thought I heard once that the Senate and the congress were sort of like the Lords and commons. I wonder (ponder) if Senators SHOULD be professional politicians and Congress should have term limits. We do need people who know what they’re doing and how things work or nothing will get done. On the other hand, to have true representation OF the people, there needs to be a little turn over.
I haven’t fully thought this out, but on the surface it makes since.

missingbite's avatar

@Judi We don’t need to become more like Europe. We are Americans. Term limits are a good thing. The longer someone is in political office, the more likely they are to forget where they came from. It’s easy to get caught up in the Washington Inside. I’m all for Term Limits.

Judi's avatar

I wasn’t saying we need to be more like Europe (Been watching the John Adams DVD series the last couple of days, so I’m sensitive to that!) I was saying that I thought I heard that Congress and the Senate were modeled after the House of Lords and House of Commons originally, that’s why Senators have a 6 year term.

missingbite's avatar

Ah! Sorry! I see what you are saying now. Thanks!

marinelife's avatar

Yes, there probably should. I did not think Strom Thurmond should have served as long as he did.

chyna's avatar

@Marina I agree. What was he, about 100? Our senator, Robert Byrd says he will only leave in a pine box. But the good folks of West Virginia keep voting for him. It certainly baffles me.

Zendo's avatar

He double L YES

lefteh's avatar

@chyna I find your comments about Robert Byrd unfounded and false. Who are you to say what goes on in his office? Based on comments from his colleagues and writings that he submits, anyone who delves into the issue will see that Senator Byrd is still one of the smartest men in America and still applies his intellect in the Senate to serve the people of West Virginia and of the United States the best he can. He is an elderly man with many health problems; he struggles with speech and motor skills. But he is still a wise man who is an important leader in the Senate.

chyna's avatar

@lefteh I agree that he was a wise man. I think because of his age and health issues he should step down. I have my opinion and you have yours.

YARNLADY's avatar

They do here in California, and it hasn’t helped a bit.

Judi's avatar

@YARNLADY, I agree. No one in Sacramento has a clue what they’re doing!

bea2345's avatar

I am ALL for term limits, especially in the post of Prime Minister (I know that this is non-US, but bear with me). He should serve only 2 terms, consecutive or not. In fact, there is a strong case for all elective posts to have term limits: when a party becomes entrenched, it often ceases to be fairly representative of the community.

Ivan's avatar

Just to clarify, Senators are congressmen too.

lefteh's avatar

[grumble] Sort of. Commonly accepted practice when writing about Congress is to refer to members of the Senate as senators and members of the House of Representatives as congressmen and -women. Technically, yes, senators are congresspeople, but not in practice.

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