Lawmaker wants term limits for Congress: 12 years in each chamber, tops

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Rep. Mick Mulvaney, Republican from South Carolina, says lawmakers shouldn’t be allowed to serve more than 24 years in Congress — and he has brought forth a bill to change the Constitution to reflect that limit.

Under his proposal, a lawmaker could serve 12 years maximum in the House. That same lawmaker could then make a run for the Senate, and serve up to another 12 years in that chamber — but then that’s it. Twenty-four years in Congress is all any individual could serve, he said, The Hill reported.

“Believe me, 24 years is more than enough time to serve in Washington,” Mr. Mulvaney said, in The Hill. “I actually pushed for much shorter terms but compromised at 12-plus-12 in order to gain the support of addition co-sponsors.”

Congressmen run for new terms every two years; senators, every six years.

Mr. Mulvaney’s bill comes on the heels of several polls that indicate Congress is facing record-low approval ratings. Only 13 percent of Americans surveyed in January by Gallup say they approved of the job performance of members of Congress — and that was up from the 5 percent another pollster recorded during the government shutdown three months earlier.

Mr. Mulvaney said, in The Hill: “Now the question becomes: How can we convince enough members of Congress that they are the problem?”

Fellow South Carolina Republican, Sen. Jim DeMint, in 2012 proposed a similar measure that saw a spectacular fail, losing a Senate floor vote of 75-24.

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