Today, U.S. Senator Jim DeMint (R-South Carolina), chairman of the Senate Steering Committee, was joined by ten Republican senators to introduce an amendment to the United States Constitution that would apply term limits to all members of Congress. The legislation, S.J. Res. 11, would limit U.S. Representatives to three terms and U.S. Senators to two terms in office. As an amendment to the U.S. Constitution, it would require a two-thirds majority vote approval in the House and Senate and must be ratified by three-fourths of the states.
Cosponsors include Senators Kelly Ayotte (R-New Hampshire), Tom Coburn (R-Oklahoma), John Ensign (R-Nevada), Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-Texas), Ron Johnson (R-Wisconsin), Mike Lee (R-Utah), Rand Paul (R-Kentucky), Marco Rubio (R-Florida), Pat Toomey (R-Pennsylvania), and David Vitter (R-Louisiana).
"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"
"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."
"And let 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.