“We’ve been there and done that and voted not to do it,” St. Tammany Parish Council Chairman Richard Tanner explained last week. “I don’t know why we’d do it again.”
There’s a lot Tanner doesn’t know.
Like that his job is representing the people. You see, Tanner wasn’t one of the three members of the 14-member council who favored a public vote on enacting term limits.
“What are the other 11 worried will happen?” asked a New Orleans Times-Picayune editorial. “They must be afraid that voters will like the idea. What reason other than self-preservation could they have for refusing to even put the question on the ballot?”
According to a 2014 poll commissioned by Concerned Citizens of St. Tammany, a group that has long urged the council to put a term limits measure on the ballot, just a mere 92 percent of residents favor term limits.
The Home Rule Charter Committee and the St. Tammany West Chamber of Commerce have also implored the parish council to permit a democratic vote.
“Our members believe firmly that voters should be allowed their constitutional right to vote on this issue, rather than have this right outright denied,” read the Chamber’s resolution.
The old Tammany Hall political machine that once ruled New York City was corrupt. Criminally so. No one has suggested criminal wrongdoing by the gang running St. Tammany Parish.
No, theirs is an intellectual corruption, an embracing of power and self-interest and a rejection of republican and democratic principles.
Either form of corruption makes a strong case for term limits.
This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.