By Caroline May
Thursday South Carolina Republican Jim DeMint introduced an amendment to the Constitution that would apply term limits to members of Congress.
Ten Republican Senators joined DeMint in his call to limit U.S. Representatives to three terms and U.S. Senators to two terms in office.
“If we’re ever going to permanently change Washington, we must change the process that encourages career politicians to amass personal power instead of making the hard decisions for the nation,” said Senator DeMint. “We need true citizen legislators who spend their time defending the constitution, not currying favor with lobbyists. We need new leaders continually coming to Congress to ensure every taxpayer dollar is spent wisely, not wasted on Washington special interests. We must end the era of permanent politicians that has led us to a $14 trillion debt and a pending fiscal crisis”
Co-sponsors to S.J. Res. 11 included New Hampshire Republican Sen. Kelly Ayotte, Oklahoma Republican Sen. Tom Coburn, Nevada Republican Sen. John Ensign, Texas Republican Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, Wisconsin Republican Sen. Ron Johnson, Utah Republican Sen. Mike Lee, Kentucky Republican Sen. Rand Paul, Florida Republican Sen. Marco Rubio, Pennsylvania Republican Sen. Pat Toomey, and Louisiana Republican Sen. David Vitter.
“If ever there was a time to enact such meaningful legislation, it’s now as we’re facing trillion dollar annual deficits due to the wasteful spending habits of Washington fixtures,” said Senator Vitter. “Term limits are something I successfully fought for in the Louisiana legislature – where we’ve since seen real reforms – and I will continue fighting for them in Congress.”
Amendments to the Constitution require approval by a two-thirds majority vote in Congress and be ratified by at least 75 percent of the states.
“[L]et me be clear that term limits will only succeed when the same rules apply to everyone. Self-term limits are a recipe for self-defeat, as the career politicians simply wait out the true reformers. We must have term limits for all or term limits won’t succeed,” said Senator DeMint.