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Increasing Election Terms

Updated: Apr 25, 2020

SB 28 was introduced this week by Senator Steve Meredith (R) that would increase terms for state senators from 4 to 6 years terms and for state representatives from 2 years to 4 years. The logic as with every one of these election bills is to save costs, because elections cost money. Again if that is the logic then a dictatorship would be much cheaper. There are plenty of other places to cut costs in state government, cost shouldn't be an excuse to limit our voice at the ballot box. We are not against finding more cost effective ways to do things, but increasing the terms limits the power of the people. The more often a legislator is up for a vote the more they will be held accountable.

At the federal level the representatives are still elected every 2 years, and while the senators are elected every 6 years it wasn't exactly that way in the beginning. They did indeed serve 6 year terms, but were appointed by the state legislatures and could be recalled at any time if they were not representing the interest of the state, the House is supposed to represent the interest of the people, so there was more frequent voting. Further The longer term for the Senate seems to provide stability and could run longer than a president. However, at the state level they are both popularly elected, one could research it, but we surmise that state senators have a larger area to represent and had to travel more when travel was not as easy. At the federal level the congressional districts did not exactly have the same make up as they do today, and to be honest there were less people and less legislation, so drawing a comparison there would not be valid as well.

To us the terms seem quite adequate providing for stability and responsive accountability today and do not need to be changed. This would only help keep bad legislators in longer, if they are good they will win re-election.

Shouldn't legislators want to be meeting with their constituents as elections force that action, more often than any other reason, after all it is one of their primary duties.

Call into the legislative hotline and leave a message for your senator, all senate leadership, and all members of the senate state and local government committee and tell them you are opposed to SB 15.

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