Government

Congressman Fitzpatrick Introduces Bipartisan Term Limits Bill With Support From President


President Donald Trump speaking Wednesday just outside Harrisburg.
Credit: Staff Sgt. Tony Harp/U.S. Air National Guard

Congressman Brian Fitzpatrick was among a group of legislators this week who introduced a bill to amend the Constitution to add congressional term limits.

The legislation follows a meeting last month between President Donald Trump and a group of lawmakers to discuss term limits. Fitzpatrick, a Republican from Middletown, led the discussion with the president.

At the time, Fitzpatrick said the president was supportive of the lawmaker’s proposal. A few days after, Trump tweeted his “full support” for term limits.

The legislation introduced this week would limit terms for members of Congress to 12 years for both chambers. That equals out to two six-year terms in the Senate and six two-year terms in the House of Representatives. The term limits would only apply to members of the current Congress and sessions seated in the future.

Congressmen Mike Gallagher, a Republican from Wisconsin; Ro Khanna, a Democrat from California and a Bucks County native; Jodey Arrington, a Republican from Texas; and Vicente Gonzalez, a Democrat from Texas, all introduced the term limits legislation this week.

A constitutional amendment requires two-thirds support in both houses of Congress and three-fourths of state legislatures.

“As a former FBI Special Agent who oversaw the FBI’s Political Corruption Unit for the entire nation, I witnessed firsthand an undeniable correlation between the length of time in office and the instances of corruption. The lines that were very bright for elected officials on day one in office were not so bright in year seven or eight, and even less so in years 15 or 20,” Fitzpatrick said in statement. “It is my firm belief that, with the support of the president and our bipartisan group of freshman members, we can address this “root issue” of systemic corruption once and for all, and we can make a real, lasting change to business as usual in Washington. We owe this to the American people. The time is now to get this done.”

“Enacting term limits would give new, energetic voices more opportunities to pursue public service. It’s time to end the status quo of career politicians. Being a member of Congress should not be a lifetime career,” Khanna said.

A 2016 Rasmussen poll found 74 percent of likely voters were in favor of term limits for Congress, and an early 2018 poll by McLaughlin and Associates found 82 percent of Americans in support of term limits.

Fitzpatrick has consistently pushed for term limits and other legislation that would hold pay for Congress if there is no budget, require a balanced budget, require single-issue legislation, move congressional redistricting to non-partisan commissions, and end congressional pensions for life.


About the author

Tom Sofield

Tom Sofield

Tom Sofield has covered news in Bucks County for five years for both newspaper and online publications. In 2012, Tom was honored at the Pennsylvania Newspaper Association Foundation's Keystone Press Awards for his coverage of President Obama's visit to Falls Township in 2011. When he's not covering news in the area, Tom enjoys checking out the newest restaurants and bars, exploring forgotten places of industry in the area, going to local parks and spending time with his friends and family. If there's one thing you should know about Tom, he is a local news junkie through and through. Email: tom@newtownpanow.com Phone: 215-431-1001