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Do Term Limits Restrict Voter Choice?

We all want choices in life.  Just look at the cars on your block it will include Buicks, Mazdas, Fords and more.  Each of them different colors and options such as sunroofs.  Now, a voter referendum successfully enacts a law that only American made cars can be on our streets.  Toyota may be the most popular, cheapest and longest running but that option is no longer available.  Mind you that over 44 million people own Toyota’s but they must dispose of them immediately.  A huge recall from the US government outlawing them goes into effect and bye bye car.  Protests ensue that in America our choices are part of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.  The government says “oh well” the voters have spoken and decided your fate.  What would you do?  Personally, all my cars and my family’s are American made so losing Toyota wouldn’t affect me at all. But what about my neighbor?  What if he would lose his job if he couldn’t drive to work?  Choices are an integral part of our American system established in our Declaration of Independence and Constitution.

Create Choices

Ballot referendums don’t ensure everyone’s pursuit of happiness.  Term limits restrict voter choices.  Maybe your neighbor is as happy with his Toyota as he is with his Alderman or Governor.  Maybe he believes they’ve done an excellent job.  You on the other hand feel the opposite.  Election day finally arrives and again you are voting for the better of two evils.  Again, it’s just two people from two party’s-A Democrat and a Republican.   Not only have you lost your choice to vote for your “old” elected official but now you have two more career politicians.  Every politician spans a 30-year career through subsidiary political officials-people from his or her team that will enter the political realm as elected leaders.  Restricting voter choice does not restrict politicians, it places restrictions on you-the voter.  If people want to ensure their choices, then Ranked Choice Voting is a successful means of enacting Democratic changes.

Ranked Choice Voting allows more people to run and be placed on ballots.  Voters will see more Independent candidates than ever before.  There could be 8 people to vote for governor than just two-now that’s choice.  RCV has been sweeping the nation as most elected officials support that type of change than firing themselves. In RCV you can vote for everyone on the ballot-even the person that’s been in that particular elected seat for 20 years.  Habits are hard to break.  We know.  This is positive change for voters.

Experience Required

Do you remember when your company hired someone with the impeccable resume?  Turns out that it wasn’t the best choice they lacked your company’s experience.  Of course, every company does similar jobs differently so we all need training.  Across the jobs sector nearly 50% of new hires fail.  If that’s true, then why do we want so many people green behind the ears in Congress?  Have you ever drafted legislation?  It’s an arduous task with entire Congressional and local government departments leading the research.  Each Congressional district has 711,000 residents each with their own needs.  Just think about the new hire that brings new hires to the Capitol or your city hall.  They usually can’t even find the buildings for each department.  So, the first two years is normally acquainting oneself with D.C. or any other local government.  Who helps these freshmen and their freshman? The experienced politicians use their time to show them around.  That stalls all the “hopes and dreams” voters were expecting.  Experience is a leader in itself.  When you limit choices, you limit your voices.

Minority Insurance

Time and again people use term limits as a means of minority election insurance.  It’s simply not true.  Minorities would gain access to ballots if an amendment was enacted for gender and racial quotas.  Countries around the world, especially on the African continent, use these quotas to enhance voter choice.  According to a CAWP study, women gain more seats when they campaign against incumbents.  Minorities gain more in some term limit contests-but not all and dependent on their gender.  Women and minorities make strides when they are well funded and tied to a strong party.  As an example, Stacy Abrams won the primary in Georgia to possibly be the first elected Black woman governor in America.  It’s not term limits that helped her but her campaign savvy and the big D for Democrat.  The Democratic party has funneled millions into this state since Hillary’s loss.  A referendum on minority quotas would make Congress and every local governing body finally look like America.  Their inclusion on the ballot would again increase not limit choice.

Your Voice, Your Choice

There are better options for voter choice than term limits.  If American voters want a true Democracy then they must expand their pallet on the ballot.  Currently, there are up to 12 people willing to run for Mayor of Chicago.  All that will do is create a multi-million dollar run-off as in 2015.  That will cost taxpayers millions of dollars through funding more election-based needs from the Board of Elections.  If we had RCV, we’d be done in February, but the beat will go on.  No need for gender or minority quotas here as the ballot will be diverse.  It’s in small town America where Latinos have become the majority that quotas are needed.  It’s in Ferguson, Missouri where over 70% of voters are Black but no one runs.  Think about what you need as a voter not who you don’t want.  Your voice, your choice.

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