New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani has done a wonderful job of rallying New Yorkers in the wake of the September 11th terrorist attacks. In fact, he’s inspired the entire country. His performance has led some pundits to disparage New York City’s term limits law that requires Rudy to step down at the end of the year.
First, they suggested the law should be overturned by the state legislature or the city council under some sort of emergency basis. The mayor considered supporting such a push, but soon rejected that idea. Now the pundits say that Mayor Giuliani is the best argument against term limits. I don’t think so.
Virtually everyone can support term limits if we’re talking about Gary Condit, Bob Packwood, Rostenkowski, or any number of others. But if term limits are a good idea, they are a good idea for even the best people. George Washington comes to mind: a great and noble leader who started the two-term presidential tradition. Term limits gave us a President Jefferson, and term limits may give us a Senator Giuliani too, or a Governor Giuliani or a President Giuliani. Certainly, after he leaves office, there is no stopping Rudy from playing a tremendous role in rebuilding New York.
Recent polls show the mayor has a good or excellent rating from over 90 percent of the city’s electorate. But those same polls asked those same New York City voters if they wanted to keep term limits. Well, they do and by the same margin they passed term limits eight years ago! Oh, ask the voters . . . why didn’t the media think of that?
This is Common Sense . I’m Paul Jacob.