Maine Seeking U.S. Congress Term Limits, Question 1 (1996)
The Maine Seeking U.S. Congress Term Limits Initiative, also known as Question 1, was on the November 5, 1996 ballot in Maine as an indirect initiated state statute, where it was approved. The measure sought to impose term limits of three terms for the United States House of Representatives and two terms for the United States Senate through five provisions. The first directed the state legislature to apply to the United States Congress to call a constitutional convention, pursuant to Article V of the United States Constitution to create an amendment for congressional term limits. Second, it directed each member of the Maine congressional delegation to vote in favor of such constitutional term limits.
Third, it required the secretary of state to print on any election ballot the phrase "VIOLATED VOTER INSTRUCTION ON TERM LIMITS" next to the name of any member of the state legislature of any governor who fails to use all of his or her power to secure the passage of an application for the federal constitutional convention. Fourth, it required the same phrase placement by any member of the congressional delegation who fails to exercise all of their legislative powers to pass such an amendment. Finally, it required the secretary of state to print on any election ballot the phrase "REFUSED TO PLEDGE TO SUPPORT TERM LIMIT" next to the name of any candidate for governor, state legislature or U.S. Congress who fails to sign a form pledging to use all of their powers to pass such an amendment.
In 1994, another indirect initiated state statute would have directed the secretary of state to not place on the ballot any candidates for the United States House of Representatives who had been elected to represent the state in that office for any six of the previous eleven years or any candidates for United States Senate who had been elected to represent the state in that office for any 12 of the previous 17 years. The measure did not prohibit persons from voting for or running as write-in candidates. It applied to times served beginning January 1, 1995.
While the measure was approved by voters, it was declared unconstitutional by the Maine Federal District Court on May 26, 1995. The court found that the measure violated the Qualification Clauses of the United States Constitution and permanently enjoined the secretary of state and attorney general from implementing, carrying out or enforcing the law.
|Maine Question 1 (1996)|
Election results via: Maine State Law and Legislative Reference Library, Votes on Initiated Bills 1980-
Text of measure
The language appeared on the ballot as:
Do you want Maine to require candidates and elected officials to show support for Congressional term limits or have their refusal printed on the ballot? 
Maine was not the only state to vote upon the issue of congressional term limits in 1996:
- Maine 1996 ballot measures
- 1996 ballot measures
- List of Maine ballot measures
- History of Initiative & Referendum in Maine
- Maine Citizen's Guide to the Referendum Election, Tuesday, November 5, 1996 from Maine Secretary of State
- Maine State Law and Legislative Reference Library, Votes on Maine Bond Issues, 1951-
- Maine State Law and Legislative Reference Library, "Votes on Initiated Bills 1980-," accessed May 1, 2014
- Maine Secretary of State: Division of Elections, "Maine Citizen's Guide to the Referendum Election, Tuesday, November 5, 1996," accessed May 1, 2014
- Laws of the State of Maine as Passed by the One Hundred and Seventeenth Legislature, "Initiated Bills, Chapter 2," accessed May 1, 2014
- Bangor Daily News, "State of Maine Referendum Election November 8, 1994: Important Notice to All Voters," November 1, 1994
- Laws of the State of Maine as Passed by the One Hundred and Seventeenth Legislature, "Initiated Bills, Chapter 2," accessed April 30, 2014
- Soley, D. A. (1996). The Invalidation of Maine Term Limits Law: A Vindication of Democracy. Maine Law Review."
- Note: This text is quoted verbatim from the original source. Any inconsistencies are attributed to the original source.
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