Jim Terry
What we need is an amendment
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By Jim Terry
March 8, 2018

With politics thick in the air this year and mid-term elections coming up, many people have talked about the need for term limits for members of Congress. This talk is long of age and has been nothing more than talk.

The 1994 Republican Contract with America proposed a vote for term limits for members of Congress. Republicans passed many of the measures they proposed in this contract. However, term limits was not one of them.

Perhaps it is time to visit not only term limits, but the section of the Constitution that sets up the legislative branch of our government. Therefore, I'm opening the pot with the following:

Proposing an amendment to the Constitution of the United States to define the terms of Congress, the remuneration for members of Congress and certain limitations on current and former members of Congress.

IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

Date: __________

Rep. _____ of ____ introduced the following joint resolution; which was referred to the Committee on the ______.

JOINT RESOLUTION

Proposing an amendment to the Constitution of the United States to define the terms of Congress, the remuneration for members of Congress and provide certain limitations on current and former members of Congress.

That the following article is proposed as an amendment to the Constitution of the United States, which shall be valid to all intents and purposes as part of the Constitution when ratified by the legislatures of three-fourths of the several States within seven years after the date of its submission for ratification:

"Article _______

Article I, Sec. 4, paragraph 2 of the United States Constitution is hereby repealed and replaced by the terms of this amendment.

If any provision of this amendment conflicts with any other portion of Article I of the Constitution, the terms of this amendment shall prevail.

REGULAR SESSIONS OF CONGRESS

In every odd numbered year, regular sessions of Congress shall commence on January 3, and shall run to the last day of August in the same year.

Congress shall recess beginning April 1 of each odd numbered year and reconvene that year's session on April 16. There shall be no recesses for Congress other than those named herein.

In every even numbered year, regular sessions of Congress shall commence April 1 and run to September 30 of said year. Congress shall have no recesses during this session.

The primary task of Congress in each regular session is to approve an annual budget for the operation of the United States government in the following fiscal year. No other business shall be conducted or legislation considered in regular sessions of Congress until Congress has passed a budget and the President has signed it into law.

Congress shall not be required to meet on a nationally recognized holiday, Saturdays, or Sundays. Congress may meet on these days by a majority vote of members of Congress.

SPECIAL SESSIONS OF CONGRESS

In the event of war or a national emergency, the President of the United States may call for a special session of Congress. Each special session of Congress may not run for more than thirty days, during which, Congress shall have no recess.

Special sessions of Congress called by the President shall be limited to the matters outlined by the President in his call for the special session. No matters shall be considered during special sessions of Congress other than those outlined by the President in his call for the special session.

REMUNERATION FOR MEMBERS OF CONGRESS

Since many government programs require beneficiaries to be subjected to a means test, in fairness to American Taxpayers, those elected to the United States Congress are hereby subjected to means testing.

Members of Congress who, on the date of their election, have a gross personal worth of one million dollars or less will receive the full compensation of congressional pay designated by federal law in effect at that time.

Members of Congress who, on the date of their election, have a gross personal worth of one million-one dollars to five million dollars, will receive sixty percent of compensation of congressional pay designated by federal law in effect at that time.

Members of Congress who, on the date of their election, have a gross personal worth of more than five million dollars, will receive twenty percent of compensation of congressional pay designated by federal law in effect at that time.

Pay for Members of Congress shall be set according to the ES-5 (Executive and Senior Level Pay Tables of the United States Government Senior Executive Service Payscale)

The operation of the offices of the Members of Congress, including the pay for congressional staff members, shall be subject to the budget process of the United States government.

Retirement benefits and health care benefits for members of Congress and their staffs shall be the same benefits available to all federal employees under the FERS (Federal Employees Retirement System) and FEHB (Federal Empoyees Health Benefits) program.

LIMITATIONS ON MEMBERS OF CONGRESS

No person shall serve more than twelve consecutive years as a member of the Congress of the United States.

No person, having served as a Member of Congress, upon leaving service in the United States Congress, may act in the capacity of a lobbyist for a public or private entity until the passage of ten years from the time the person leaves service as a Member of Congress.

© Jim Terry

 

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Jim Terry

Jim Terry has worked in Republican grassroots politics for 40 years. Terry was an administrative assistant to a Republican elected official in Dallas for twenty years. In 1996, he ran for and was elected to Justice Court 2 in Dallas County where he served eight years. Contact Jim at tr4guy62@yahoo.com

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