Saturday, October 14, 2006

Promises Unkept

A key proposal for the Republicans "Contract with America" was an amendment to impose term limits on congress. When the amendment was proposed, seven members of the class of '94 pledged to limit themselves to twelve years in congress. In 2000, four more promised to leave after six years.

A promise is apparently not that important (at least not when it comes to retaining power). Of the ten members due to retire, not one is stepping down . Each is reneging on their campaign pledge and running again in 2006. According to the sourcewatch, The pledge-breakers are:
Rep. Barbara Cubin (R-Wyo.)
Rep. Phil English (R-Pa.)
Rep. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.)
Rep. Gil Gutknecht (R-Minn.)
Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-Texas)
Rep. Ric Keller (R-Fla.)
Rep. Timothy V. Johnson (R-Ill.)
Rep. Frank LoBiondo (R-N.J.)
Rep. Mark Souder (R-Ind.)
Rep. Zach Wamp (R-Tenn.)
MyDD actually lists thirty who have gone back on campaign pledges or promises to self-impose term limits -- because every single one of the non-incumbent Republican congressional candidates signed the Contract -- which includes the Citizen Legislature Act, meant to limit every member of the congress to 12 years. They may not have explicitly promised in their campaign to limit themselves to 12 years, but they certainly signed on to the document when they thought it was going to help them.
The 10th plank of the Contract with America, which was signed by every single non-incumbent Republican Congressional candidate, is the Citizen Legislature Act. This was a proposed amendment to the Constitution that would have limited every member of the U.S. Congress (both houses) to twelve consecutive years of service

30 current House members are Republicans first elected in 1994. Only 5 of them are on CQ Politics's list of 8. That leaves 25 more who signed the Contract, which would have stopped them from seeking re-election. At last count, every single one of them was running
Perhaps they simply thought it was so long ago we'd all forget?

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