we th epeople Government Reform - Term Limits

"In March 1998, the Supreme Court let stand term limits for state lawmakers, permitting California,
which has some of the country's strictest tenure restrictions, to continue enforcing them."

"Some states have even tried to limit the terms of their members of Congress. In 1995, however, the Supreme Court ruled
that letting states establish such restrictions would violate the Constitution and weaken Congress's national character.
The only way to limit congressional terms is to amend the Constitution, the court ruled." Term Limits Special Report.
Susan Heavey, Washington Post

Federal Election Commission - information

Not everyone agrees with term limits.
Common Cause and the League of Women Voters are two prominent national organizations that oppose term limits.

Read - Real Term Limits: Now More Than Ever, Doug Bandow, The Cato Institute. 1995

question mark Conduct a survey of your class. Do you think term limits for elected officials leads to better government?



Which elected offices in your state have term limits? What are the limits?


Which national elected offices have term limits? What are the limits?


What consequence does the current status of this issue, in your state, have for the common citizen?


How long should an elected official be permitted to serve in one office?


Are there term limits on officers of your school's Student Council? Should there be? (Consult the bylaws)


quill an dink potAction:

Write a letter to the editor regarding this issue to one of the local media sources in your community. Tell them how you feel about term limits and what you believe should be done about it. Endeavor to cite specific examples. Alternatively, you can write to someone who represents you at the local level.

Your challenges include: finding their address, identifying any word count limit they impose, using the correct salutation including title, as well as, following appropriate business letter writing format.

*Many national and state elected officials have an email form/link in their web site. It is reasonable to use this, in lieu of paper and postage, but format and style expectations remain the same. Write the letter in word processing. Edit it as needed. Then copy .. paste it into the email form. Some have a maximum character limit to emails. If that is the case, write the formal letter. Then drop the address heading and date from the email.

Your America: Take action resources

"Bad officials are elected by good citizens who do not vote." George Jean Nathan


Citizens for Term Limits Project on Government Oversight
Term Limits 10 years later Only action produces change
Legislative Term Limits: An Overview Writing to persuade

THOMAS - legislative information from the Library of Congress

Committee on Standards of Official Conduct - 110th Congress

How to track Federal Legislation using THOMAS Senate Committees
opensecrets.org Government Integrity - The Power of facts from the Web
CSpan What are Our Nation's Priorities?

USA.gov is the official web portal to all federal, state and local government web resources and services.

Tech Tip: Working in a group or in two different places like the library & home? You do not have to be physically together to work together. gold starWatch Google Docs video TAI - How could you use free, Google Docs to do a project? How would this facilitate group projects?

Can a letter make a difference?

Kids’ letter campaign spells end for green beans | Picking Letters, 10 a Day, That Reach Obama

Look into the story of Sarah Josepha Hale. Her letter writing campaign is important to us every November.
Or consider the advocacies of Anna Jarvis and Rachel Carson.


"Seventeen (17) of twenty-four (24) representatives appointed to the Speaker's Commission on Legislative Reform voted in support of term limits,
but because of Speaker O'Brien's insistence of a three-fourths super-majority, the commission failed to recommend this critical plan." Jeremy Johnson

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developed by Cynthia J. O'Hora. In the spirit of Thomas Paine released to public domain and Posted 11/2006

tree icon Use a Digital Answer Format : Highlight the text of the questions on this web page, copy them - Edit .. Copy. Open a text document or word processing document. Paste the questions into the blank document. Answer the questions in the word processing document in a contrasting color (not yellow)or font ( avoid fancy fonts like: black, Symbol, dearform fomnt or broad. Save frequently as you work. I do not like losing my work. You will not like it either. Put your name and the date in a header. Bad things happen. Retain a copy of your work on your computer.

Proof your responses. It is funny how speling errors and typeos sneak in to the bets work. smiling icon Make Your Own Printed answer sheet.