U.S. Rep. Ralph Norman (R- S.C.) recently introduced three pieces of legislation that addresses federal term limits.
"The time is now that we end the reign of career politicians and make them come home to live under the laws they pass," Norman said in a statement. "Term limits would cut the influence of special interest lobbyists and encourage a true citizen-legislature."
Norman introduced the legislation at the beginning of the year but said it has not made any progress through the wheels of Congress.
The first piece of legislation would create a constitutional amendment that gives Congress the authority to set term limits.
The VOICE Act would create a nonbinding referendum on 2020 federal election ballots. It asks whether Congress should approve a constitutional amendment to limit the number of terms a member of the House of Representatives and Senate can serve in office. It is structured to establish where citizens stand on the issue.
The third piece of legislation addresses perks and benefits accrued by retired members of Congress. It would end access to various health care and retirement benefits as well as free parking at local airports.
"Members of Congress are elected to serve their constituents, not reap numerous perks for the rest of their lives once they leave office. Most Americans do not have similar lifetime benefits when they leave their job,’’ Norman said. "Lifetime access to this exclusive circle keeps them in that circle, and distances former members from the experiences of everyday Americans. We must return to a government that works for the people, not the other way around."
Recent polls also indicate support for the bills by South Carolina residents. In one survey conducted by McLaughlin and Associates, more than 80 percent of Republicans and Democrats support such a measure.
Three South Carolina Republican representatives and a senator have signed the U.S. term limits pledge: Sen. Tim Scott, Rep. Jeff Duncan, of the Third Congressional District, Rep. William Timmons of the Fourth District, and Norman, who is from the Fifth.
Similar legislation is being introduced in the South Carolina statehouse as well. H3166 seeks an amendment convention that would propose term limits on Congress
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