Double political terms but limit them to ONE!

Think about it… a FREE solution to solving our political corruption problem. Gov. Walker should love it!

By Jack E. Lohman

Political corruption begins about two weeks into the first term, when money must be collected for the second term.  Thus if there is no second term this corruption is virtually eliminated.

Political terms should be doubled in length but limited to ONE, so politicians don’t/can’t give away the store to (a) raise cash for a second term and (b) to do stupid things to gain votes for re-election.

We pay a heavy price for a very messy and corrupt political system. If they weren’t political prostitutes we wouldn’t have to worry about it, but they are.  For that they should be ashamed, but we should also be for re-electing them.

With this system, when politicians are newly elected, they do not have to start spending 25-50% of their time dialing for dollars, because there is no second term. They can actually start working for the people as they are being paid to do. Unique, huh?

What if we really elect a winner…

… and the public doesn’t want them ousted? Though rare, I keep thinking of jewels like Senators Bill Proxmire and Gaylord Nelson, who’d still be respected politicians if alive today.

There is a solution: an extraordinary hurdle showing strong public support of overriding the system. Let the incumbent run for a second term on two conditions: (a) that he or she collects signatures exceeding 25% of the previous vote total, just to get on the ballot, and (b) that he or she wins 80% of the total votes to win the second term.

Or whatever…

Who could complain??? It would not cost taxpayers a penny, as would public funding of campaigns. And it wouldn’t violate the constitutional problems ala Citizens United. It’s a winner!!!

But oh, if a Fat Cat has invested heavily in a politician and they want them to stay “bought,” they will object to this system. Yet if the Fat Cats double down on their money the 80% requirement will kill their chances.

If they were not taking cash bribes from both sides of the issues, business and union, I doubt that any of us would care which party is elected.

2 Responses to Double political terms but limit them to ONE!

  1. GreggP says:

    This is an interesting proposal. I like the possibility that elected politicians won’t need to start raising money for their next campaign. This might discourage people that are not really interested in public service.

    This might even help with our current partisan gridlock. Maybe a member of a political party would support legislation proposed by someone in another party if the policy was something they agreed with, instead of immediately going against the opponent for political reasons. We’ve all heard many examples of Republicans rejected policies proposed by Obama or other democrats, even ones that originated with republicans, simple to beat them politically. Didn’t the repubs say their #1 priority was to make sure Obama didn’t serve a 2nd term?

    However, if a 2 year term becomes a 4 year term, and a 4 year term becomes 8 years. What happens if we have another politician who, with the help of his corporate donors, gets elected and pushes through policies that weren’t mentioned during his campaign, but these policies anger a large segment of the voters? Can he still be recalled?

    And regarding the corporate donors, how would this discourage them from supporting a candidate from the beginning? They still retain the same corrupt system we have today with the revolving door between politician and lobbiest still intact. I think we would still want campaign spending limits or public funding.

    As for the 80% rule. I doubt any politician (even Proxmire or Nelson) would be popular enough to win 80% of the votes. The staunch Republicans would never vote for a Democrat, no matter how good they are…

  2. Good questions, Gregg. Clearly a lot of thought would need to go into this, but I would hope that it eliminates some partisanship. And I think a recall capability would be needed (we have it at state but I don’t know about federal). Also, if we could eliminate the partisanship the 80% would be a hurdle but not impossible.