Recently a candidate for Congress attended a meeting of political activists. He told the folks that he wanted to win the seat and hold it for 20 years. One of the activists ventured, “I take it you’re not for term limits?” “Oh yes, yes, yes,” said the candidate. “I’m for term limits. I’m a BIG supporter of term limits.”
Politicians are notorious at talking the talk, but then not walking the walk. For career politicians, issues are something they put in their speeches and commercials because they know that’s what voters care about. Issues are the bait politicians use to catch voters, but politicians aren’t committed to anything but the act of reeling us in. They often don’t respect our opinions the morning after the election.
But there is a pledge that gives us as voters a lot better handle on what is truly motivating someone to run for office. It’s called the Term Limits Pledge. It’s not a pledge to support term limit bills in a Congress dead-set against them. It’s a pledge about not pursuing a career as a politician, at all. Going to Washington for a short period of public service as a citizen legislator. No more than three terms, tops.
Career politicians become skillful at the bob and weave of telling people what they want to hear, and then finding excuses for failing to follow through. But representatives who take the Term Limits Pledge swear off a career. They act on their belief in term limits. And they do fight for what they believe in. They walk the walk.
This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.