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Term Limits for Congress Pros and Cons List

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Politicians with nothing left to lose have the opportunity to leave themselves with a lasting legacy because of term limits. They could pursue something in U. Because they have nothing left to lose, there are no more criticisms or lobbying interests to sway their political opinion.

In this scenario, term limits could become a power motivator for change. Politicians with term limits have less time to make an impact on legislation. That means there are fewer opportunities for special interests to lobby through specific politicians for outcomes that they find to be favorable. Although this would likely cause a bigger overall push for rapid action by lobbyists, newly elected officials tend to be more skeptical of purchased political influence when compared to incumbents.

When politicians serve on the same committees and work together frequently, it creates a comfort level that can leave them blind to what the voices of the voters are actually saying. Replacing politicians every so often can reduce this blindness, helping the government actually serve the people. Many forms of lobbying are designed to keep specific politicians in positions of power. This is done because the lobbying groups want someone in leadership that will represent their interests at the legislative table.

There will likely be lobbyist influence in Washington all the time, but with new faces coming in every few years, the establishment issues being experienced currently would begin to be less disruptive than they currently are. That could allow for more positive legislation to be introduced, if not passed, in each session. Fundraising is a top priority for most politicians. Re-election campaigns are already starting to raise money for the next election cycle before the current one begins in many circumstances.

It took Donald Trump fewer than 3 months to establish a fundraising PAC for his anticipated election campaign. Many Republicans and Democrats have taken similar actions. There will always be money in politics, but with term limits in place, it could be shifted toward something better than another re-election. That means a minority of voters usually decides the direction the nation will take for the next 2 or 4 years.

With term limits in place, more candidates would be able to present their positions to the voting public. If you look at the history of legislation in Washington, most of it is just recycled ideas from previous years. Even major legislation items, such as the Affordable Care Act, is a reboot from Republican efforts to nationalize healthcare in To get new ideas in Congress, new people need to be sent there to make that happen.

It would prevent the isolation that elected officials currently enjoy more often because more people would have a chance to get their opinions heard in a meaningful way. In the United States, being a politician in Washington is seen more as a career option than a temporary assignment. Elected officials do what they need to do to continue that career.

When politicians have a specific time in office, there is less of a risk of corruption entering into the conversation.

Newly elected officials will usually have less knowledge about how to influence Congress for their own personal gain. New members are usually more skeptical of special interest lobbying efforts as well. Having more new faces come through because of term limits would make it more difficult to unduly influence future laws.

It could create rogue politicians. When an elected official is in their last term in office, they can use that opportunity to drive legislation forward that may not be politically popular. They can pursue what they feel is best for their district and their country because criticism and everyday politics can then be ignored. It is a chance to create meaningful and lasting change.

Good leaders would be forced to retire. Term limits are beneficial if there are poor leaders in Congress that keep getting re-elected. It changes the learning curve. For Representatives especially, their entire first term might be dedicated to learning how things work in Congress. By enforcing term limits, more politicians would be forced to go through this learning curve and that could mean even less stuff gets done.

Networking benefits would be lost. Over time, politicians develop a professional network, just like most people do in their own line of work. The difference is that the network of a politician can include officials from other governments, from industry leaders, and people with niche expertise.

The presence of that network can help stuff get done. Term limits would require more networks to be developed from scratch. There is no motivation for them to be a true representative at that point. They can choose to ignore what their district wants because there is no longer any accountability. Learn something new every day More Info The pros and cons of term limits in Congress have been debated pretty heavily over the years, and there are many opinions among experts on both sides of the issue.

Most experts agree that the main advantages of term limits are the potential for a reduction in corruption, an increase in the number of new ideas flowing into the legislative environment, and politicians who might potentially focus more on effective governance instead of constantly worrying about reelection as a top priority. Some of the potential negatives include a constant influx of inexperienced politicians, and the potential consequences of congressional leaders who don't have any concern about voter opinions.

Many experts believe that politicians have a tendency to grow more corrupt as they spend more time in office. Some blame this on the legislative environment, while others simply cite basic human weakness and the tendency of people to succumb to temptation if they are exposed for too long.

Term limits are often seen as one potential solution for this problem. By shortening congressional terms, proponents hope to make sure that nobody sees becoming a congressional representative as a viable lifetime career choice, leading to more people who get into politics for noble reasons instead of a simple desire for power.

Another possible advantage of term limits is the potential to change the behavior of people who are elected. It is pretty common for politicians to be accused of constant jockeying for electoral advantage instead of voting based on their real beliefs.

For example, a political leader might decide to oppose a plan even though he knows it could help people simply because it was proposed by someone from the other side of the political spectrum, and voting for it might make it seem like he is siding with a political enemy. Some hope that by reducing the constant concerns about being reelected, term limits in Congress could potentially reduce this kind of political gamesmanship.

Term limits would also potentially result in a constant influx of new people bringing new concepts and philosophies to the table, which is often seen as an important advantage. Sometimes people stay in congress for a very long time, and they may become very skilled as legislators. Term limits would mean that nobody spent too much time in Congress, and after every election, there would be a huge class of rookies who wouldn't fully understand the insider tricks needed for effective legislating.

Some people believe that this lack of understanding about how legislation works in a practical sense could be so disadvantageous that it might outweigh any potential advantages of term limits in Congress. Another concern is that term limits would shorten the careers of some of the best congressional legislators. People who have no history of corruption or political gamesmanship would be forced to leave along with the bad apples, regardless of their performance or merit. There is also a lot of worry that it might not always be such a good thing if congressional legislators ignored the politics and the concerns of their constituents while in office.

Legislators without any concern about politics might do more good in some cases, but they might also pursue ideologically unpopular ideas without a second thought. One thing I see that isn't mentioned in this article is: How about we limit money and its influence on and in congress? How about we limit K streets accessibility to congress? I say people trying to over run our government will celebrate for years, starting the day term limits are enacted.

If you really want to change how things are done in congress, then we need to change the things that are tempting in congress and not congress itself. If you put money in the streets and tell people not to steal it, well, they're gonna steal it, anyway. Changing the street signs aren't going to help. In effect, that's all term limits will do is change the street signs. Term limits are nothing but a huge red herring. Stop stealing citizens' rights!

RevJoe Post 9 The problem either way is that we have a citizenry who is complacent and happy to be so. Even though they complain, they don't feel strongly enough to do anything. We truly would not need term limits if constituents would do their duty and learn about the candidates. The system would take care of itself.


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Lack of term limits leads to a system of seniority, meaning those who have spent the most time in office gain more power (in committees, procedures, etc.); consequently, politicians focus on staying in office, districts & states don't receive equal power in Congress, and fresh new elected officials have limited ability to make changes.

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Term limits reduce the immediate pressure on elected officials who will soon face voters by limiting the amount of time defining the amount of time they will serve in the position ahead of time. This should allow them to focus on the long term needs of the country as opposed to the current political climate.

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Learn about the pros and cons of term limits for Congress, plus find out about legislation creating term limits in Congress. The pros and cons for congressional term limits would solve some of the problems that we see in Washington. Like any other change to a governing system, however, there would likely be unexpected negative consequences which would develop as well.

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Recommended Posts. Alternative to FEGLI Option B. Recent Posts. Alcoholism and Verbal Abuse; Hyponatremia and Alcoholism. List of the Pros for Congressional Term Limits. 1. It would bring new ideas to the table. When the same people keep getting elected to Congress time and time again, the same debates happen over and over again. Low turnover rates .