Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Let’s Try a One Term Limit!

You’d have to be both deaf and illiterate not to understand that politics in Washington D.C. has turned really awful and accomplishes little good for the American people!
by Charlie Leck

I found a tantalizingly good editorial by Matt Miller in the Washington Post yesterday [Why we need a third party!] and I recommend it to you. Miller said plenty of bad things about both major parties with which most thinking people are going to agree. I, a firm forever Democrat, do!

“Finally, neither party trusts us enough to lay out the facts and explain the steps we need to take to truly fix things.

“This goes well beyond the jobs crisis or the budget. Take education. Democrats can’t say we need to fire bad teachers who are blighting the lives of countless kids, because teachers unions are the party’s most powerful interest group. But Republicans can’t say we need to raise salaries for new teachers substantially if we’re going to lure a new generation of talent to the classroom, because that’s admitting that money is part of the answer. Trouble is, we’ll never solve what ails education without getting bad teachers out and paying up for new talent to come in. That means Democrats and Republicans can’t solve the problem….

“Multiply this dynamic across every major issue and you’ll see there’s a staggering void in the debate. The parties act this way because their core constituencies have a stake in a failed status quo. But where does that leave the majority of us who are not in the Republican or Democratic base? Where does it leave the country?”

Miller quotes Daniel Patrick Moynihan as saying: “If issues can’t be discussed, they can never be advanced.”

I’m not sure the answer is a third party – most certainly not any old third party. The answer might instead lie in a complete reformation of the electoral and political system. A high school classmate of mine – from more than 50 years ago – has been arguing vehemently for years that one term only federal legislators is the only thing that makes sense. I argued with him against that proposition. I’m changing my mind. Allow federal Representatives to serve two years only and Senators six years only. Don’t allow any of them to become professional legislators.

Today’s Congress has become too professional. Nearly every single one of these bastards (red and/or blue) is voting primarily to protect his/her seat (or insert a similar word).

I was very impressed the other day when Republican Senator Lamar Alexander, from Tennessee stepped down from his leadership position in the Senate. He said he wanted to concentrate more on being a Senator. He wants to make the Senate “an effective and efficient place.” He wants to end partisan bickering and make decisions for the good of the nation that rise above politics and concentrate on what’s best for the country rather than the success of a party.

If you consider the House and Senate as a whole, I think you will understand what benefit there could be for the nation if our elected representatives are voting for the best policies for the nation rather than those considerations that will get them reelected.

I’m on board for a constitutional amendment that will allow only one single term for both Representatives and the Senators.


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1 comment:

  1. I agree that our representatives have become professional office holders rather than legislators. The one term concept is intriguing but I question the 2 year term for the House. It takes a year just to figure out where the Capitol is. Why not have the Senate patterned after the House of Lords with about as much power?