Argument AGAINST of Proposition One

Congressional term limits have been held unconstitutional by the United States Supreme Court and the Idaho Supreme Court. A 1996 initiative to place a statement on the ballot regarding a candidate's refusal to support term limits was held unconstitutional by the Idaho Supreme Court. The current initiative is today's serving of yesterday's cold oat meal -- the unconstitutional 1996 version has been reworded in an effort to gain approval from the Idaho Court, but the intent, purpose and effect are the same as the flawed version of two years ago. If the current version is approved by the voters, it will surely face a challenge in the courts, with a strong likelihood that it, too, will be found unconstitutional.

Term limits is based on the arrogant assumption that the voters are incapable of deciding who they want to represent them in Congress. Term limits have failed to assure that any elected official is more wise, more honest or more energetic because he is incapable of running for reelection. Logic and experience prove the opposite. Any Congressman who is made ineligible for reelection by term limits feels no restraints upon his behavior, since he will not face the voters again at the next election to answer for his conduct.

If the ballot can be used to describe a candidate's position on term limits, other special interest groups will surely seek to have their pet issues receive similar treatment. The result could be a ballot containing descriptions of candidate's positions on term limits, abortion, nuclear waste disposal, property tax relief, animal rights, gay rights, water rights, environmental issues, immigration reform, consumer protection and any other issue which a new special interest group can get put on the ballot. The Idaho ballot could come to resemble the Sunday edition of the New York Times -- a condition which would sharply discourage voter turn-out at a time when efforts are under way to increase public participation in the election process.

Idaho is a small State with only two members in the U.S. House of Representatives. California has 52 members; New York has 31. The only chance Idaho has in having any real clout in Congress is by having senior House members whose seniority puts them in positions of leadership and influence. If Idaho adopts any form of congressional term limits, we will be at an even greater disadvantage in dealing with the influence of the most populous states which have no term limits.

Term limits are a bad idea. Vote "no" on Proposition One.

Save the Constitution Committee

Rebuttal to Argument Against Proposition One

If ever there was a voters' Initiative, Proposition One is it.

This is simply Idahoans' way of taking back control of our government from the professional ruling class -- the career politicians.

Politicians, bureaucrats, the media and liberal judges have worked together to deny the will of the people who overwhelmingly support Congressional Term Limits.

Long-term career politicians spend more, tax more and regulate us excessively.

Even the best of them forget whose money they're spending after a few years in Washington, D.C.'s "Congressional ruling class."

Proposition One will be held constitutional because it is entirely voluntary. It informs voters if candidates for Congress have voluntarily pledged to limit their time in Congress to 2 six-year terms in the Senate and 3 two-year terms in the House.


People in 23 states voted for Congressional Term Limits;

Idaho citizens have twice approved Congressional term limits in statewide elections;

A January research study published by Boise State University reported that 80% of Idahoans support Term Limits.

Who opposes Term Limits?

Career politicians, special interest groups, lobbyists, and the liberal media -- all desperate to maintain their control over our political system.

To preserve our liberties and our prosperity, Idahoans must have the opportunity to elect citizen legislators.

Citizen Legislators will honor the Constitution; shrink the power, size and intrusiveness of the Federal Government; and respect the rights of all citizens and taxpayers.

Vote "YES" again on Term Limits.

Citizens for Term Limits