By Michelle Hurni , Fort Collins Republican Examiner
If congress won’t vote term limits for themselves, voters can do it for them. If you are for a two term limit for the Senate (12 years) and 3-4 term limit for the House (6-8 years), promote “term limits” as you vote.
Or, if a representative votes for something you don’t approve of, recall them. Make sure you let them know why you won’t be voting for them. Send a strong message. Of course, everyone will disagree about issues, even within party lines, so make sure you are sending a message about something you feel strongly about. Minor issues shouldn’t make or break a candidate or representative.
The New American has an article on December 28 urging voters to recall anyone who voted for the over-reaching National Defense Appropriations Act of 2012 (NDAA). The NDAA calls for American citizens to be detained as “unlawful enemy combatants” and subject them to military tribunal.
By voting out representatives who have been in Washington long enough to get comfortable, we can keep them accountable. Sure, some might just go right back to Washington as a lobbyist, but fresh blood is a good thing.
If the US Congress has the lowest approval rating of 12.7% (Real Clear Politics for Dec. 14-18, 2011) and a disapproval rating of 84%, shouldn’t we make some big changes?
Originally, people ran for Congress to make a difference, then return to their chosen career, however, politicians are now in it for the long haul, especially with high salaries and benefits.
Look at the longest sitting, and current members of the Senate Daniel K. Inouve (D-HI), serving since 1963, that’s 48 years and Patrick J. Leahy (D-VT), serving since 1975, 36 years. And in the House of Representatives, we have John Dingell (D-MI), who has been there for 56 years.
In Colorado, our two Senators are relatively new, Michael Bennet (D) has served since 2009, and Mark Udall (D) was elected in 2008, but served in the House before that (1999-2009).
In the House, members are up for re-election every two years. We have the following members serving for us in Washington D.C.:
Diana DeGette (D) serving her 8th term (16 years)
Doug Lamborn (R) and Ed Perlmutter (D): 3rd term (6 years)
Jared Polis (D), Mike Coffman (R) and Scott Tipton: in their 2nd term
Cory Gardner (R), 1st term
Let’s enact our own term limits and get in people who care about their constituents, not about furthering government interference in our lives, in Washington D.C.