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Term limits in the United States

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❶Trump realDonaldTrump April 30, Above all, supporters argue, term limits could reduce corruption and increase independence from special interests and partisanship.

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Should there be term limits for members of Congress and the Supreme Court?
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But in that case, warned Gouverneur Morris, presidential candidates would make corrupt bargains with Congress to get re-elected. Term-limit amendments were proposed each year, but never adopted. Why bother, if the convention worked so well?

The crisis of the Second World War was exactly the kind of exception that justified a departure from the term limits convention. President Roosevelt ran for and was elected to a third term in and then a fourth in The war over, the British returned to their convention. In the years since, presidents of both parties—Ronald Reagan and Barack Obama, to name just two—lamented that they could not run for a third term.

Presidential term-limits are now a constitutional requirement. But should they be? Would it be better to rely on convention, as the British do, to give ourselves the flexibility needed in an emergency? Or without the constitutional requirement, would presidents today often seek third terms and perhaps more , quickly putting an end to the two-term convention and raising again.

The Twenty-Second Amendment limits a President to no more than eight years in office. It is hard to have strong feelings about the Twenty-Second Amendment. Much of the debate over presidential term limits is speculative, with little real evidence of their effect and arguments pro-and-con in equipoise. Thirty years later, an embarrassed Madison tried to explain away what might have seemed like monarchism to his new political allies, but his opposition to term limits in was likely sincere.

Before he was reappointed to a second term, a President would trade favors with Congressmen. That was their way around the need for term limits. Something else had changed. What that was, of course, was the enormous growth in the size of government, the concentration of political power in Washington, and within Washington in the presidency.

Today American presidents wield almost absolute power, and that almost corrupts absolutely, to paraphrase Lord Acton. This in turn explains why term limits commend themselves in America, but not in Britain or Canada.

The rigors of parliamentary debate, and the threat of non-confidence motions, are themselves a form of term limits, and recent presidents and prime ministers in America, Britain, and Canada have on average all served about the same five-year term. For parliamentary leaders, time has seemingly accelerated, with a burn out rate coming more quickly today than in the time of Pitt the Younger 18 years or Sir John A.

The Great Books people used to produce a yearly supplement with essays on all of the best and brightest ideas of the day. Term limits helps prevent that from happening. And shall I die, and this unconquered, says the dying Tamburlaine.

We might want to live as long as Methuselah, but all our medical research has made only a little difference in our lifespan, and were it otherwise we might still be talking about Walter Pater and the aesthetic movement.

If only la jeunesse savait , we complain. Buckley, The Once and Future King: Buckley, The Republic of Virtue: The convention of two-term presidencies that long-predated the Amendment complicates any effort to assess the measure.

On balance, enacting the Twenty-Second Amendment may well have been a mistake, but repealing it now would be worse. The two biggest complaints against the Twenty-Second Amendment are that it yields failed lame-duck second terms and creates instability in personnel and policy.

Critics point to the number of failed presidential second-terms since the Amendment was adopted and identify the Amendment as the culprit. That predictability no doubts emboldens Congress and others when dealing with a lame duck president. But as scholars like David Crockett have argued, many factors have contributed to failed second terms—including errors committed by the President or his staff during the first—and political factors wholly separate from term limits often give presidents a narrow window at the outset within which to enact change.

The thinking goes that once a lawmaker spends too much time in Washington, he or she becomes part of Washington and incapable of effectively serving people outside of it. So let's put a limit on how long they can be in Washington. But three of those proposals, as the New York Times reported at the time , even failed to get a bare majority. There really hasn't been a major push for term limits since. Some lawmakers have decided to impose their own term limits. But history is littered with broken term-limit promises.

But in , he was back, saying the idea of term limits is flawed unless everyone agrees to them. We're picking on Salmon, but lots of lawmakers have and continue to run for office despite making campaign pledges to leave office at a certain date.

In other words, proposing term limits for Congress is a popular thing to say on the campaign trail. And of all the reasons Trump's term-limit proposal won't happen, this is probably the most salient: Congress doesn't want it. Term limits for Congress are probably never, ever going to happen. During a rally in Colorado, Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump pledged to introduce a constitutional amendment that would impose term limits on members of Congress.

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Term limits in the Constitution In He specifically put forth the idea of congressional term limits and suggested a national constitutional convention be used to accomplish the amendment, since the Congress would be unlikely to propose and adopt any amendment that limits its own power.

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Term Limits and the Constitution. The Founding Fathers - the people who wrote the Constitution - did, in fact, consider and reject the idea of congressional term limits. In Federalist Papers No. 53, James Madison, father of the Constitution, explained why the Constitutional Convention of .

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Heretofore, federal term limit discussions have focused on proposals which require amending the Constitution. These well-intentioned efforts, in the form of at least 12 bills in the current session of Congress, with over 90 co-sponsors, are stymied by the arduous process of amending the Constitution. From time to time, the idea of putting term limits on Congressmen comes up. The most recent example is legislation that was introduced by Congressman Francis Rooney (R-FL). He proposed legislation that is designed to effectively impose term limits without having to amend the Constitution by cutting.

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Given Congress’s conflict of interest, therefore, term limits supporters are also pursuing the second course that Article V authorizes: “on the Application of the Legislatures of two thirds of. Watch video · That means that for congressional term limits to become legal again, Congress would have to amend the Constitution. Trump proposed a constitutional amendment during the campaign, and one member of.