mabfan (Michael A. Burstein) (mabfan) wrote,
mabfan (Michael A. Burstein)

Letter in New York Times: Presidential Term Limits

I had a letter in the New York Times today, a response to the Op-Ed piece from last Thursday, "No More Second-Term Blues," by James MacGregor Burns and Susan Dunn. My letter was one of seven they chose to publish, and you can find it at the Times, under the heading How Long Should a President Serve? (along with the other six letters).

The gist of the Op-Ed piece was that it's time to repeal the 22nd Amendment, which limits the president to two terms. I took an opposing view, pointing out some of the dangers of eliminating term limits. Specifically, term limits helps keep this country a republic; and the popularity of certain political dynasties in this country could lead to a de facto hereditary monarchy without term limits.

I had a third point I made as well in my original letter, which they had to edit out due to space considerations. I suggested that a one-term limit would help eliminate the lame-duck problem that Burns and Dunn perceived, but that the term should be an eight-year one. Turns out that another letter writer, Adam Reinke of Somerville, Massachusetts, suggested the same thing, but a six-year term instead of an eight-year one, which I like better.

I also appreciated the letters from Ilya Shlyakhter of Princeton, New Jersey, suggesting that candidates who wished to run again would have to take a term off; and from Ron L. Meyers of New York, NY, who suggested that eliminating term limits could go along with creating a possibility of no-confidence votes for greater accountability.
Tags: history, nyc, personal, politics
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