WASHINGTON, D.C. (CBSMiami) — Two lawmakers have introduced an amendment to the U.S. Constitution to impose term limits on members of Congress.
Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and Rep. Ron DeSantis (R-Fla.) filed the constitutional amendment Tuesday, limiting U.S. senators to two 6-year terms and members of the U.S. House of Representatives to three 2-year terms.
“D.C. is broken,” Sen. Cruz said on his website. “The American people resoundingly agreed on Election Day, and President-elect Donald Trump has committed to putting government back to work for the American people. It is well past time to put an end to the cronyism and deceit that has transformed Washington into a graveyard of good intentions.”
— Senator Ted Cruz (@SenTedCruz) January 3, 2017
During his campaign for president, Trump often called on his supporters to elect him in order to “drain the swamp” — a metaphor for political stagnation and corruption within the nation’s capital.
Under the Constitution, senators can serve an unlimited number of six-year terms and members of the House of Representatives can serve an unlimited number of two-year terms. Reformers argue that it often leads to focusing on re-elections, rather than accomplishing goals. In the 1990’s, congressional term limits were on the ballot but weren’t passed.
Rep. DeSantis said limits on their time in office are the first step toward reform.
“Eliminating the political elite and infusing Washington with new blood will restore the citizen legislature that our Founding Fathers envisioned,” he said. “The American people have called for increased accountability and we must deliver.”
According to a Rasmussen survey in October, 74 percent of Americans support setting term limits for all members of Congress.
The amendment was co-sponsored in the Senate by Sens. Deb Fischer (R-Neb.), Ron Johnson (R-Wisc.), Thom Tillis (R-N.C.), Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), Mike Lee (R-Utah), and David Perdue (R-Ga.).