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Active Questions

Why are there no term limits for senators ?
Race, Religion & Politics / 9:46 AM - Wednesday February 11, 2009

why are there no term limits for senators ?

I'm curious as to why there are no term limits in the senate. if somebody is a senator, they are senator for life, and if they die, or are unable to perform their duty, they can pick who takes their place.

i find that deeply disturbing, because a politician in office that long is bound to become corrupt.

what would we need to do to change that?

- Asked by weekendbrew, A Jock, Male, 29-35, Miami, Technical

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I have been screaming about this for years. Not only corrupt, but senile. They are the ones that have to change that law and they aren't about to cut their noses off. That is one of the best jobs in the whole country. They come and go as they please, get excellant pay for doing little or nohing and we, as their bosses have no control.

- Response by barbb, An Alternative Girl, Female, Who Cares?, Other Profession

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WTF? A senator is NOT a "senator for life." They are elected every six years. They can be voted out when their six year term is up, during an election any time the voting public decides they don't want them anymore, and we can vote in a new senator every term.

Supreme Court justices, who are appointed not elected, serve for life, though.

- Response by justpassingthru, A Thinker, Female, 56-65, Financial / Banking

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There are no term limits for Senators OR Members of the House, but they are not senators for life, senators face re-election every six years, House Members every two years. This provides the voters with more choice, which to me seems like a GOOD thing. If voters LIKE their senator, they can keep reelecting him or her, if they dont, they can vote him/her out - with term limits voters cannot reward good senators with reelection and voters may be forced to give up a good senator for someone new who may be good or bad. Why should voter's choices be restricted in that way?

Term limits are also bad because they make politicians LESS responsive to the voters. If a senator is in their last term, their lame duck term, there is no reason for them to do what their constituents want. If they have to face reelection then they will do things the voters want in order to get their votes next time around - if they cant get reelected no matter what, where is the incentive to do things the voters want?

Also experienced politicians generally speaking make better politicians - they know how to get things done. Just like you would rather have an experienced surgeon operating on your, or an experienced pilot flying your plane, an experienced politician will be more effective than an inexperienced one, and term limits remove experienced politicians.

Term limits make sense for the office of the President, because thats a MUCH more powerful position, and such power may corrupt the officeholder so that they abuse the office they hold. But each senator and member of congress is just one out of 535 people, so their power is much less, and therefore the danger from them being corrupted is also less.

- Response by xerxes, An Intellectual Guy, Male, 46-55, Washington, DC, Lawyer

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You would have to write your Senator (oops) to push for a Constitutional Amendment. This probably won't ever happen as Amendments to the US Constitution are a pain in the ass.

Something to consider is that the non-corrupt ones have tons of experience, and many government jobs have term limits where maybe there shouldn't be, as the new guys are um, new.

- Response by anothergentleman, A Father Figure, Male, 29-35, Los Angeles, Technical

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I think that's whythe Jews wanted wars in Europe to defeat the Kingdoms, because kings can't pass the buck. Our founding fathers thought they had given us such a checks and balance government, but it's the worst form of government, because they stay there forever and once someone controls a government with all the senators and congressman there is no way to get rid of them, but a country with just a president giving orders can be replaced. I like the German form of government or the Czar government prior to the 20th century, because there was no pork barrel.

- Response by poorboysrevenge, A Jock, Male, 56-65

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Unless the state they are from is going to impose term limits, then it won't happen. One of the worst things people ever did was to change the process for choosing a senator. It used to be that the governor appointed the senators, that the senators were actually representing the states they came from. In today's open market, senators are more interested in their party than working for the state they represent.

- Response by pizzaman, A Father Figure, Male, 66 or older

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Wow. You flunked civics class eh?

Senators are not elected for life. They must be reelected every six years. And this is by design. The Senate serves as institutional memory. It's supposed to be full of old dudes who remember how things were fifty years ago.

And seriously,how can you pick someone after you die?

The governor is who picks to replace a Senator who dies or otherwise leaves office.

Or did you miss that whole Blagojevich thing?

- Response by llafsroh, An Intellectual Guy, Male, 46-55, Boston, Science / Engineering

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WHAT different does it makes if they are senators for life, or if they change them every year.-
All politicians are "CORRUPT".-

- Response by edi406, A Thinker, Female, 56-65, Consulting

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I thought you got to vote on them. Maybe during the primaries.

They've all got their hands out. Business as usual.

Some do alot for their states...and that's where it gets tricky. Because he might be corrupt, but he gets things done...and you know what you've got, but don't know what you would be getting once you change things.

- Response by pushkins, A Thinker, Female, 66 or older, Miami, Who Cares?

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There aren't any term limits in the House of Representatives, either. In fact, I think that term limits for legislative bodies are quite rare. The why is easy - the legislators themselves would have to pass a law to limit their own terms. Never happen.

- Response by 2wheels, A Creative, Male, 56-65, Retired

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