By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter
BIRMINGHAM—On Tuesday, November 18, U.S. Term Limits (USTL), which calls itself the nation’s oldest and largest term limits advocacy group, announced today that at least 13 new signers of its congressional term limits amendment pledge have been elected to the 114th Congress. The group includes four new senators, eight new House members and one House incumbent who signed the pledge for the first time this cycle. Included in this group is Alabama’s Sixth District Congressional District Congressman elect Gary Palmer.
The group is asking Congress to co-sponsor and vote for a constitutional amendment limiting House members to three terms (six years) and Senators to two terms (12 years).
USTL President Philip Blumel said, “The American people are fed up with career politicians in Washington and strongly embracing term limits as a remedy. We applaud these pledge signers for putting the people’s choice ahead of their own personal ambitions.”
USTL said that once sworn in, the new signers will be reminded to co-sponsor the U.S. Term Limits Amendment, a bill that currently has 30 sponsors between its House and Senate versions. Introduced by David Vitter (R from Louisiana) in the Senate and Matt Salmon (R from Arizona) in the House, it will now have more than double the support of any other term limits legislation.
U.S. Term Limits hope that congressional leaders will take notice as support builds in both chambers.
On Thursday, June 19 in the Alabama’s Republican Sixth Congressional District Candidates debate, former Alabama Policy Institute President Gary Palmer said that political office should not be a job. He said that he is committed not to move up there (Washington). “Congressmen that do, they become part of the Washington culture.” Palmer pledged to hold a breakfast once a month to discuss issues with constituents and develop a farm team of leaders for the state, including his eventual replacement. Congressman elect Palmer has vowed that he will come home when his ten years are up whether term limits pass or not.
The debate at Birmingham’s Region Park was hosted by the Greater Birmingham Young Republicans (GBYR).
Blumel said, “Gallup polling shows that 75 percent of Americans support term limits, including big majorities with Republicans, Democrats and Independents. As their colleagues jump on board, leadership will not be able to get away with ignoring the issue much longer.”
In the 1990s, U.S. Term Limits assisted victorious initiative campaigns in 23 states to term limit their own members of Congress. In the 1995 case U.S. Term Limits v. Thornton, the Supreme Court decided 5-4 to undo these limits and disallow any further action by states.
With the states forbidden from passing congressional term limits, USTL is pinning its hopes on the constitutional amendment.
Newly elected House Signers include: Gary Palmer (AL-6), Ken Buck (CO-4), Rick Allen (GA-12), Rod Blum (IA-1), Lee Zeldin (NY-1), John Ratcliffe (TX-4), Dave Brat (VA-7), Frank Guinta (NH-1), and Tom Rooney (FL-17).
Newly elected Senate Signers include Senator-elect: Ben Sasse from Nebraska, Thom Tillis from North Carolina, David Perdue from Georgia, and Steve Daines from Montana.
There is a possibility of picking up another signer in Louisiana, where Bill Cassidy (R) is participating in a Senate runoff on Dec. 6th with incumbent Mary Landrieu (D).