Congressman Jim Bridenstine Introduces Term Limits Amendment
Congressman Jim Bridenstine (R-OK) has introduced the first bipartisan Congressional term limits legislation in more than a decade. Bridenstine introduced the proposed Constitutional amendment, House Joint Resolution 45, with fellow freshman Congressman Beto O’Rourke (D-TX). The legislation, if adopted, would allow Congress to pass laws to limit the number of terms that a Representative or Senator may serve.
A recent Gallup survey showed that 75% of the American public supports Congressional term limits, but there has been almost no real action on the matter since 1995. With the overall approval rating of Congress somewhere around 15%, it is clear that the American people are sending not only a strong message about what’s wrong with Washington, but their idea for a solution as well.
The Constitution prescribes the age, citizenship, and residency requirements to serve in the U.S. Congress. Thus it is widely accepted that a limit on the number of terms a Representative or Senator may serve must be implemented as a Constitutional amendment. Many term limit amendments have been proposed, however, the Bridenstine/O’Rourke amendment is unique in that it does not declare a set number of terms that may be served. Instead, this amendment would simply authorize Congress to pass laws that set the exact term limits through the regular legislative process.
Bridenstine observed, “Members of Congress in the House and Senate need to be focused on doing the right thing, not on preserving their careers by getting re-elected.”
O’Roarke added, “By enacting sensible term limits I hope we can improve how Congress works and ensure we are serving the interests of the nation, not our own re-election bids. We owe our constituents institutional reforms that address these concerns.”
The resolution has now been referred to the House Judiciary Committee. Bridenstine & O’Rourke will be encouraging Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) and Ranking Member John Conyers (D-MI) to hold a hearing on their proposal and get the conversation on term limits started again.
Bridenstine and O’Rourke authored an op-ed featured in Thursday’s edition of POLITICO that lays out the case and rationale for this innovative approach to term limits. You can read the op-ed by Clicking Here.
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