Republican Representative Mike Ramone is trying to rebrand himself from corrupt self dealer who abuses his power into some kind of good government advocate with one Constitutional Amendment providing for term limits. Now, I oppose term limits generally because I feel it does deprive the voters a choice. And if an office holder stays in too long and becomes too corrupt or unresponsive to constituents, those same constituents tend to exercise their rights and vote the bastards out.
Indeed, I have always felt that term limit proposals were insulting to voters, as if they could not be trusted to vote out those who truly need to be retired for whatever reason.
But if the immediate concern is that we have too many Senators and Representatives in office right now that have been in office too long, some for decades, then boy did Ramone pick the wrong time to make that argument. Last year saw record retirements, with some long time incumbent defeats piled on top of that. This coming election cycle also promises to include several retirements, including that of the most prominent offender of staying too long (four decades plus), Harris McDowell.
Further, if the concern of this bill is to immediately limit the terms of those who have stayed in office too long, then this bill does not help that. For it grandfathers in and does not apply to those already in office. The bill would only start to apply those those Representatives and Senators elected to office in 2022. And if you are elected in 2022 as a Representative and have served for 40 years prior, that 40 years is not counted against you, so that, if you were able, you could continue to serve another 20 years.
So this bill is ineffective, perhaps intentionally so. And it is highly likely that this bill will never see the floor, and it is just as well for the Republican sponsors of the bill, because they just want the issue, not realizing that the voters are already limiting the terms of the representatives they no longer like. Starting in 2020 with Mike Ramone.
Where is the bill now? House Administration 1/4/19
Democratic Sponsors: None
Republican Sponsors: Ramone, Delcollo, Wilson, Smith, Briggs King, Dukes, Gray, Morris, Spiegelman