Term Limits: Treating the Symptom – not the Disease.
By: Publius Huldah
1. We already have term limits for U.S. Representatives & Senators – just vote them out of office. But we keep re-electing the same people! So, the people in the term limits movement seek to impose term limits by amending the Constitution to impose them. And somehow, this is supposed to fix our problems.
2. But the term limits movement is a distraction which diverts us from dealing with the real cause of our problems: Our legislators disregard the Constitution. So why do we keep re-electing them? Because we don’t care that they disregard the Constitution, or we don’t have a clue as to what the Constitution means.
So, unless we turn over a new leaf, learn the Constitution, teach it to others, and start demanding that legislators obey the Constitution, limiting their terms by law just increases the turnover of legislators who disregard the Constitution.
3. To those of you who are so keen to amend the Constitution: Instead of expending your energies to amend the Constitution to impose “term limits”, why not focus on getting an Amendment which repeals the 17th Amendment? That is a worthy aim.
a) As originally written, Senators were chosen by the State Legislatures (Art. I, Sec. 3, clause 1), and the Senators represented their States! In Federalist No. 62 (3rd & 5th paras), Madison pointed out that the appointment of Senators by the State legislatures was to secure the authority of the State governments in the federal government. He also said, “…the equal vote allowed to each State is at once a constitutional recognition of the portion of sovereignty remaining in the individual States and an instrument for preserving that residuary sovereignty…” in order to guard “…against an improper consolidation of the States into one simple republic”. Does this not make you weep?
b) Thanks in part to the blind fools who supported the 17th Amendment, “federalism” has been obliterated. Go here to understand “federalism”.