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Term limits on the ballot

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Term limits on the ballot: This subtopic of "elections and campaigns" refers to the use, increase or decrease of term limits on public officials. Term limits are a legal restriction on the number of terms a person may serve in a particular office. Ballotpedia also includes term lengths in this definition. Limits vary by state. State executives, state legislative representatives, judges and board officials are some of the offices with term limits.

Examples:

Term limit

A term limit is a legal restriction that limits the number of terms a person may serve in a particular elected office.

There are different types of term limits. Sometimes, there is an absolute limit on the number of terms a person can serve, while in other cases, the restrictions are merely on the number of consecutive terms.

Ballot measures lists

[edit]

Alaska

  1. Alaska Term Limits, Measure 4 (1994)
  2. Alaska Term Limits, Measure 4 (1996)
  3. Alaska Term Limits Pledge, Measure 7 (1998)


Arizona

  1. Arizona Corporation Commission Membership, Proposition 103 (2000)
  2. Arizona County Officers Term Limits Amendment, Measure 104 (1964)
  3. Arizona Four Year Terms for County Officers, Proposition 1 (October 1933)
  4. Arizona Four Year Terms for County Officers, Proposition 2 (1946)
  5. Arizona Four Year Terms for County Officers, Proposition 4 (September 1950)
  6. Arizona Four Year Terms for Executive Officials, Proposition 3 (September 1950)
  7. Arizona Four Year Terms for Mine Inspector, Proposition 5 (October 1933)
  8. Arizona Four Year Terms for State Legislators, Proposition 1 (September 1950)
  9. Arizona Four Year Terms for State Legislators, Proposition 6 (October 1933)
  10. Arizona Four Year Terms for State Officers, Proposition 1 (1946)
  11. Arizona Four Year Terms for State Officers, Proposition 3 (October 1933)
  12. Arizona Mine Inspector Term Limit Amendment, Proposition 101 (1992)
  13. Arizona State Treasurer Term Limits Amendment, Proposition 102 (1980)
  14. Arizona Term Limit Amendment, Proposition 104 (1968)
  15. Arizona Term Limits, Proposition 107 (1992)
  16. Arizona Term Limits for State Treasurer, Proposition 100 (1988)
  17. Arizona Two Terms Limit for State Officials, Proposition 1 (1926)


Arkansas

  1. Arkansas Compensation Commission, Proposed Amendment 1 (1990)
  2. Arkansas Congressional Term Limits, Amendment 9 (1996)
  3. Arkansas Elected Officials Ethics, Transparency and Financial Reform Amendment, HJR 1009 (2014)
  4. Arkansas Four-Year Terms for Elected County Officials, Proposed Amendment 66 (1986)
  5. Arkansas House of Representatives Term Limit, Proposal 1 (2004)
  6. Arkansas Term Limits Initiative, Amendment 4 (1992)
  7. Arkansas Term Limits for State Constitutional Officers, Proposed Amendment 64 (1984)


California

  1. California Proposition 131, Ethics, Term Limits and Campaign Finance Act (1990)
  2. California Proposition 225, Ballot Line Indicating Position on Term Limits (1998)
  3. California Proposition 27, Ballot Declaration of Position on Term Limits (2000)
  4. California Proposition 28, Change in Term Limits (June 2012)
  5. California Proposition 45, Extended Terms in Office via Petition (March 2002)
  6. California Proposition 93, Amendment to Term Limits Law (February 2008)
  7. California Term Limits, Proposition 140 (1990)
  8. California Term Limits for County Officials Initiative (2014)


Colorado

  1. Colorado Four-Year Terms for Certain County Officials, Measure 1 (1932)
  2. Colorado Four-Year Terms for County Officers, Measure 8 (1922)
  3. Colorado Four-Year Terms for County Officers, Measure 8 (1954)
  4. Colorado Four-Year Terms for Elected State Officials, Measure 3 (1954)
  5. Colorado Four-Year Terms for Elective State Officers, Measure 9 (1922)
  6. Colorado Four-Year Terms for State Officials, Measure 1 (1956)
  7. Colorado Term Limits, Initiative 12 (1996)
  8. Colorado Term Limits, Initiative 5 (1990)
  9. Colorado Term Limits, Referendum A (2002)
  10. Colorado Term Limits Act, Amendment 17 (1994)
  11. Colorado Term Limits for Supreme Court and Court of Appeals Judges, Initiative 40 (2006)
  12. Colorado Terms for County and Local Officers, Measure 6 (1962)
  13. Colorado Voluntary Congressional Term Limits, Initiative 18 (1998)




Florida

  1. Florida County Officer Terms, Amendment 1 (1904)
  2. Florida House of Representatives Four Year Terms, Amendment 6 (1970)
  3. Florida Legislative Term Lengths and Limits Amendment (2014)
  4. Florida Legislature Size and Terms of Office, Amendment 2 (October 1890)
  5. Florida Selection and Retention of Circuit and County Judges, Amendment 6 (1978)
  6. Florida Term Limits, Amendment 9 (1992)
  7. Florida Term Limits for Persons Appointed or Elected to Fill Vacancies, Amendment 7 (1944)
  8. Florida Terms of Office for Trial Court Judges, Amendment 7 (1988)



Hawaii

  1. Hawaii Judicial Term Limits, Ballot Measure 7 (1994)


Idaho

  1. Idaho Abolish Probate Court, HJR 3 (1908)
  2. Idaho County Prosecuting Attorney Term Limit, HJR 15 (1982)
  3. Idaho Establish Term Limits, Proposition 2 (1994)
  4. Idaho Extend County Sheriff Term Limit, SJR 6 (1964)
  5. Idaho Extending Terms of State Officers, SJR 4 (1914)
  6. Idaho Four Year Term for County Assessor, HJR (1970)
  7. Idaho Four Year Term for County Treasurer, SJR 121 (1970)
  8. Idaho Four Year Terms for County Commissioners, HJR 5 (1904)
  9. Idaho Four Year Terms for State Officers, HJR 8 (1928)
  10. Idaho Reinstatement of Term Limits through Ballot Restrictions, Proposition 2 (2002)
  11. Idaho Term Limit Ballot Information, Proposition 1 (1998)
  12. Idaho Term Limits for State Officers, SJR 1 (1944)
  13. Idaho Terms of Office for County Commissioners, SJR 7 (1934)
  14. Idaho U.S. Congressional Term Limits Act, Proposition 4 (1996)


Illinois

  1. Illinois Term Limits for Legislators Amendment (2014)




Kansas

  1. Kansas Term Limits Amendment (2014)


Kentucky

  1. Kentucky 1984 ballot measures
  2. Kentucky 1986 ballot measures
  3. Kentucky Expands Term Limits of Mayors, Amendment 2 (1986)
  4. Kentucky Proposed Amendment 2, Allowable Length of Service for Governors (1992)
  5. Kentucky Proposes a Change in Elected Officials Term Limits, Amendment 1 (November 1981)
  6. Kentucky Term Limits on Sheriffs, Amendment 1 (1984)


Louisiana

  1. Louisiana Term Limit of 3 Terms on Legislators, Amendment 2 (October 1995)
  2. Louisiana Term Limits for Public Boards Act, Amendment 1 (2008)


Maine

  1. Maine Congressional Term Limits, Question 1 (1996)
  2. Maine Congressional Term Limits Initiative, Question 1 (1994)
  3. Maine Gubernatorial Term Continuation, Proposed Constitutional Amendment No. 2 (1971)
  4. Maine Gubernatorial Term Length and Limits, Proposed Constitutional Amendment No. 3 (1957)
  5. Maine Tenure of Sheriffs Amendment (1985)
  6. Maine Term Limits, Question 1 (1993)
  7. Maine Term Limits Extension, Question 5 (2007)



Massachusetts

  1. Massachusetts Four Year Terms for Constitutional Officers, Question 1 (1964)
  2. Massachusetts Presidential Term Limits, Question 8 (1948)
  3. Massachusetts Term Limits Initiative, Question 4 (1994)


Michigan

  1. Michigan Term Limits Amendment, Proposal B (1992)



Mississippi

  1. Mississippi Term Limits, Initiative 4 (1995)
  2. Mississippi Term Limits, Measure 9 (1999)


Missouri

  1. Missouri Congressional Term Limits, Amendment 9 (1996)
  2. Missouri Sheriffs and Coroners Succession, Issue 9 (1938)
  3. Missouri State Legislative Term Limits, Amendment 12 (1992)
  4. Missouri State Treasurer Succession, Issue 2 (1938)
  5. Missouri Term Limit Calculations, Amendment 3 (2002)
  6. Missouri U.S. Congressional Term Limits, Amendment 13 (1992)


Montana

  1. Montana Term Limits, Amendment CI-64 (1992)
  2. Montana Term Limits, I-132 (1996)
  3. Montana Terms of Office Increase, Measure C-42 (2004)


Nebraska

  1. Nebraska State Legislative Term Limits, Initiative 415 (2000)
  2. Nebraska Term Limits, Initiated Measure 408 (1994)
  3. Nebraska Term Limits Amendment, Amendment 3 (2012)
  4. Nebraska Term Limits Amendment, Measure 407 (1992)
  5. Nebraska Term Limits Ballot Instruction, Measure 409 (1996)


Nevada

  1. Nevada Judicial Term Limits, Question 9B (1996)
  2. Nevada State and Local Public Officer Term Limits, Question 9A (1996)
  3. Nevada State and Local Public Officer Term Limits, Question 9 (1994)
  4. Nevada U.S. Congressional Term Limits, Question 17 (1996)
  5. Nevada U.S. Congressional Term Limits, Question 17 (1998)
  6. Nevada U.S. Congressional Term Limits, Question 8 (1994)



New Mexico

  1. New Mexico County Term Extension Amendment, Amendment 2 (2010)
  2. New Mexico Eliminate Term Limits for County Officials, Question 2 (2000)





North Dakota

  1. North Dakota Congress Term Limits, Measure 5 (1992)
  2. North Dakota County Officers Election Terms Referendum (1938)
  3. North Dakota County Official Term Lengths, Initiative 2 (1962)
  4. North Dakota County Officials Election Terms Referendum (1936)
  5. North Dakota County Treasurer Term Restriction, Initiative 9 (1956)
  6. North Dakota District Court Judges Terms Referendum (1930)
  7. North Dakota Four Year Term Limit Initiative (1930)
  8. North Dakota House Member Terms, Measure 3 (1996)
  9. North Dakota State Legislative Term Limits and Ballot Instruction Measure, Measure 5 (1996)
  10. North Dakota State Treasurer Term Limit Repeal Referendum, Amendment 2 (1970)
  11. North Dakota State and County Official Term Lengths, Initiative 5 (1964)
  12. North Dakota Supreme Court Judges Term Limits Referendum (1930)
  13. North Dakota Supreme Court Term Limits Referendum (1912)
  14. North Dakota Tenure of Railroad Commissioners Referendum (1926)
  15. North Dakota Terms of State and County Offices, Referendum 3 (1958)
  16. North Dakota United States Constitutional Convention, Measure 6 (1996)


Ohio

  1. Ohio County Officer Term Limits, Amendment 3 (1925)
  2. Ohio County Official Term Lengths, Amendment 2 (1915)
  3. Ohio Four Year State Senate Terms, Issue 2 (1956)
  4. Ohio Gubernatorial Term Limits, Issue 1 (1954)
  5. Ohio Issue 2, Congressional Term Limits Initiative (1992)
  6. Ohio Issue 2, Judicial Terms and Compensation (1947)
  7. Ohio Issue 3, State Legislative Term Limits Initiative (1992)
  8. Ohio Issue 4, Statewide Constitutional Officers Term Limits Initiative (1992)
  9. Ohio Length of State Legislative Terms, Issue 2 (1954)


Oklahoma

  1. Oklahoma State Legislative Term Limits, State Question 632 (1990)
  2. Oklahoma Term Limits, State Question 747 (2010)
  3. Oklahoma U.S. Congressional Term Limits, State Question 662 (1994)


Oregon

  1. Oregon Ballot Measure 45, Term Limits (2006)
  2. Oregon Removal of Term Limits for Secretary of State and Treasurer, Measure 1 (1940)
  3. Oregon Term Limits for Congressional Legislators, Measure 48 (1996)
  4. Oregon Term Limits for Legislators and Statewide Offices, Measure 3 (1992)



Rhode Island

  1. Rhode Island Term Limits Amendment (2014)



South Dakota

  1. South Dakota Amendment F, Repeal Term Limits (2006)
  2. South Dakota Initiated Measure 1, Term Limits (1996)
  3. South Dakota Repeal Term Limits, Constitutional Amendment J (2008)
  4. South Dakota Set Term Limits (1992)



Texas

  1. Texas Proposition 10 (2009)
  2. Texas Proposition 4 (2001)


Utah

  1. Utah Term Limits, Initiative A (1994)




Washington

  1. Washington County Official Term Limits, Amendment to Article XI Sec. 7 (1912)
  2. Washington Notice of Term Limit Opposition Initiative, Initiative 670 (1996)
  3. Washington Number of Years for State Legislative Terms, HJR 4212 (1987)
  4. Washington Repeal of County Officer Term Limits, HJR 4 (1948)
  5. Washington Successive Terms for State Treasurers, SJR 6 (1956)
  6. Washington Term Limits, Initiative 553 (1991)
  7. Washington Term Limits, Initiative 573 (1992)
  8. Washington Term Limits for County Officers, SJR 1 (1940)


West Virginia

  1. West Virginia County Sheriff Term Limit Amendment, Amendment 1 (2012)


Wisconsin

  1. Wisconsin County Executive Term of Office Amendment, Question 2 (1962)
  2. Wisconsin Four Year Terms for Senators Amendment, Question 2 (1854)
  3. Wisconsin Legislature Amendment, Question 1 (1881)
  4. Wisconsin Sheriff Term Limits Amendment, Question 1 (1922)
  5. Wisconsin Sheriff Term Limits Amendment, Question 1 (April 1946)
  6. Wisconsin Sheriff Term Limits Amendment, Question 2 (April 1929)
  7. Wisconsin Sheriff Term Limits Amendment, Question 2 (April 1961)
  8. Wisconsin Sheriff Term Limits Amendment, Question 3 (April 1956)
  9. Wisconsin Sheriff Term Limits Amendment, Question 6 (April 1967)
  10. Wisconsin Terms of County Officers Amendment, Question 1 (April 2005)
  11. Wisconsin Two Year Terms for Assembly Members Amendment, Question 1 (1854)


Wyoming

  1. Cathcart v. Meyer
  2. Wyoming Term Limits, Initiative 2 (1992)
  3. Wyoming Term Limits Initiative (1996)
  4. Wyoming Term Limits Referendum (1996)

2014

  1. Arkansas Elected Officials Ethics, Transparency and Financial Reform Amendment, HJR 1009 (2014)
  2. California Term Limits for County Officials Initiative (2014)
  3. Florida Legislative Term Lengths and Limits Amendment (2014)
  4. Illinois Term Limits for Legislators Amendment (2014)
  5. Kansas Term Limits Amendment (2014)
  6. Rhode Island Term Limits Amendment (2014)



2012

  1. California Proposition 28, Change in Term Limits (June 2012)
  2. Miami-Dade County Term Limit Amendment Question (November 2012)
  3. Montgomery County Term Limit Amendment (2012)
  4. Nebraska Term Limits Amendment, Amendment 3 (2012)
  5. West Virginia County Sheriff Term Limit Amendment, Amendment 1 (2012)



2010

  1. New Mexico County Term Extension Amendment, Amendment 2 (2010)
  2. Oklahoma Term Limits, State Question 747 (2010)


2009

  1. Texas Proposition 10 (2009)


2008

  1. California Proposition 93, Amendment to Term Limits Law (February 2008)
  2. Louisiana Term Limits for Public Boards Act, Amendment 1 (2008)
  3. South Dakota Repeal Term Limits, Constitutional Amendment J (2008)


2007

  1. Maine Term Limits Extension, Question 5 (2007)


2006

  1. Colorado Term Limits for Supreme Court and Court of Appeals Judges, Initiative 40 (2006)
  2. Oregon Ballot Measure 45, Term Limits (2006)
  3. South Dakota Amendment F, Repeal Term Limits (2006)


2005

  1. Wisconsin Terms of County Officers Amendment, Question 1 (April 2005)


2004

  1. Arkansas House of Representatives Term Limit, Proposal 1 (2004)
  2. Montana Terms of Office Increase, Measure C-42 (2004)



2002

  1. California Proposition 45, Extended Terms in Office via Petition (March 2002)
  2. Colorado Term Limits, Referendum A (2002)
  3. Idaho Reinstatement of Term Limits through Ballot Restrictions, Proposition 2 (2002)
  4. Missouri Term Limit Calculations, Amendment 3 (2002)


2001

  1. Texas Proposition 4 (2001)


2000

  1. Arizona Corporation Commission Membership, Proposition 103 (2000)
  2. California Proposition 27, Ballot Declaration of Position on Term Limits (2000)
  3. Nebraska State Legislative Term Limits, Initiative 415 (2000)
  4. New Mexico Eliminate Term Limits for County Officials, Question 2 (2000)


1999

  1. Mississippi Term Limits, Measure 9 (1999)


1998

  1. Alaska Term Limits Pledge, Measure 7 (1998)
  2. California Proposition 225, Ballot Line Indicating Position on Term Limits (1998)
  3. Colorado Voluntary Congressional Term Limits, Initiative 18 (1998)
  4. Idaho Term Limit Ballot Information, Proposition 1 (1998)
  5. Nevada U.S. Congressional Term Limits, Question 17 (1998)



1996

  1. Alaska Term Limits, Measure 4 (1996)
  2. Arkansas Congressional Term Limits, Amendment 9 (1996)
  3. Colorado Term Limits, Initiative 12 (1996)
  4. Idaho U.S. Congressional Term Limits Act, Proposition 4 (1996)
  5. Maine Congressional Term Limits, Question 1 (1996)
  6. Missouri Congressional Term Limits, Amendment 9 (1996)
  7. Montana Term Limits, I-132 (1996)
  8. Nebraska Term Limits Ballot Instruction, Measure 409 (1996)
  9. Nevada Judicial Term Limits, Question 9B (1996)
  10. Nevada State and Local Public Officer Term Limits, Question 9A (1996)
  11. Nevada U.S. Congressional Term Limits, Question 17 (1996)
  12. North Dakota House Member Terms, Measure 3 (1996)
  13. North Dakota State Legislative Term Limits and Ballot Instruction Measure, Measure 5 (1996)
  14. North Dakota United States Constitutional Convention, Measure 6 (1996)
  15. Oregon Term Limits for Congressional Legislators, Measure 48 (1996)
  16. South Dakota Initiated Measure 1, Term Limits (1996)
  17. Washington Notice of Term Limit Opposition Initiative, Initiative 670 (1996)
  18. Wyoming Term Limits Initiative (1996)
  19. Wyoming Term Limits Referendum (1996)


1995

  1. Louisiana Term Limit of 3 Terms on Legislators, Amendment 2 (October 1995)
  2. Mississippi Term Limits, Initiative 4 (1995)


1994

  1. Alaska Term Limits, Measure 4 (1994)
  2. Colorado Term Limits Act, Amendment 17 (1994)
  3. Hawaii Judicial Term Limits, Ballot Measure 7 (1994)
  4. Idaho Establish Term Limits, Proposition 2 (1994)
  5. Maine Congressional Term Limits Initiative, Question 1 (1994)
  6. Massachusetts Term Limits Initiative, Question 4 (1994)
  7. Nebraska Term Limits, Initiated Measure 408 (1994)
  8. Nevada State and Local Public Officer Term Limits, Question 9 (1994)
  9. Nevada U.S. Congressional Term Limits, Question 8 (1994)
  10. Oklahoma U.S. Congressional Term Limits, State Question 662 (1994)
  11. Utah Term Limits, Initiative A (1994)


1993

  1. Maine Term Limits, Question 1 (1993)


1992

  1. Arizona Mine Inspector Term Limit Amendment, Proposition 101 (1992)
  2. Arizona Term Limits, Proposition 107 (1992)
  3. Arkansas Term Limits Initiative, Amendment 4 (1992)
  4. Florida Term Limits, Amendment 9 (1992)
  5. Kentucky Proposed Amendment 2, Allowable Length of Service for Governors (1992)
  6. Michigan Term Limits Amendment, Proposal B (1992)
  7. Missouri State Legislative Term Limits, Amendment 12 (1992)
  8. Missouri U.S. Congressional Term Limits, Amendment 13 (1992)
  9. Montana Term Limits, Amendment CI-64 (1992)
  10. Nebraska Term Limits Amendment, Measure 407 (1992)
  11. North Dakota Congress Term Limits, Measure 5 (1992)
  12. Ohio Issue 2, Congressional Term Limits Initiative (1992)
  13. Ohio Issue 3, State Legislative Term Limits Initiative (1992)
  14. Ohio Issue 4, Statewide Constitutional Officers Term Limits Initiative (1992)
  15. Oregon Term Limits for Legislators and Statewide Offices, Measure 3 (1992)
  16. Proposition 164, Term Limits on California's U.S. Congressional Delegation (1992)
  17. South Dakota Set Term Limits (1992)
  18. Washington Term Limits, Initiative 573 (1992)
  19. Wyoming Term Limits, Initiative 2 (1992)


1991

  1. Washington Term Limits, Initiative 553 (1991)


1990

  1. Arkansas Compensation Commission, Proposed Amendment 1 (1990)
  2. California Proposition 131, Ethics, Term Limits and Campaign Finance Act (1990)
  3. California Term Limits, Proposition 140 (1990)
  4. Colorado Term Limits, Initiative 5 (1990)
  5. Oklahoma State Legislative Term Limits, State Question 632 (1990)
  6. The 1989 Interest Rate Control Amendment, Proposed Amendment 2 (1990)



1988

  1. Arizona Term Limits for State Treasurer, Proposition 100 (1988)
  2. Florida Terms of Office for Trial Court Judges, Amendment 7 (1988)


1987

  1. Washington Number of Years for State Legislative Terms, HJR 4212 (1987)


1986

  1. Kentucky 1986 ballot measures
  2. Kentucky Expands Term Limits of Mayors, Amendment 2 (1986)


1985

  1. Maine Tenure of Sheriffs Amendment (1985)


1984

  1. Arkansas Term Limits for State Constitutional Officers, Proposed Amendment 64 (1984)
  2. Kentucky 1984 ballot measures
  3. Kentucky Term Limits on Sheriffs, Amendment 1 (1984)



1982

  1. Idaho County Prosecuting Attorney Term Limit, HJR 15 (1982)


1981

  1. Kentucky Proposes a Change in Elected Officials Term Limits, Amendment 1 (November 1981)


1980

  1. Arizona State Treasurer Term Limits Amendment, Proposition 102 (1980)



1978

  1. Florida Selection and Retention of Circuit and County Judges, Amendment 6 (1978)








1971

  1. Maine Gubernatorial Term Continuation, Proposed Constitutional Amendment No. 2 (1971)


1970

  1. Florida House of Representatives Four Year Terms, Amendment 6 (1970)
  2. Idaho Four Year Term for County Assessor, HJR (1970)
  3. Idaho Four Year Term for County Treasurer, SJR 121 (1970)
  4. North Dakota State Treasurer Term Limit Repeal Referendum, Amendment 2 (1970)



1968

  1. Arizona Term Limit Amendment, Proposition 104 (1968)


1967

  1. Wisconsin Sheriff Term Limits Amendment, Question 6 (April 1967)




1964

  1. Arizona County Officers Term Limits Amendment, Measure 104 (1964)
  2. Idaho Extend County Sheriff Term Limit, SJR 6 (1964)
  3. Massachusetts Four Year Terms for Constitutional Officers, Question 1 (1964)
  4. North Dakota State and County Official Term Lengths, Initiative 5 (1964)



1962

  1. Colorado Terms for County and Local Officers, Measure 6 (1962)
  2. North Dakota County Official Term Lengths, Initiative 2 (1962)
  3. Wisconsin County Executive Term of Office Amendment, Question 2 (1962)


1961

  1. Wisconsin Sheriff Term Limits Amendment, Question 2 (April 1961)




1958

  1. North Dakota Terms of State and County Offices, Referendum 3 (1958)


1957

  1. Maine Gubernatorial Term Length and Limits, Proposed Constitutional Amendment No. 3 (1957)


1956

  1. Colorado Four-Year Terms for State Officials, Measure 1 (1956)
  2. North Dakota County Treasurer Term Restriction, Initiative 9 (1956)
  3. Ohio Four Year State Senate Terms, Issue 2 (1956)
  4. Washington Successive Terms for State Treasurers, SJR 6 (1956)
  5. Wisconsin Sheriff Term Limits Amendment, Question 3 (April 1956)



1954

  1. Colorado Four-Year Terms for County Officers, Measure 8 (1954)
  2. Colorado Four-Year Terms for Elected State Officials, Measure 3 (1954)
  3. Ohio Gubernatorial Term Limits, Issue 1 (1954)
  4. Ohio Length of State Legislative Terms, Issue 2 (1954)





1950

  1. Arizona Four Year Terms for County Officers, Proposition 4 (September 1950)
  2. Arizona Four Year Terms for Executive Officials, Proposition 3 (September 1950)
  3. Arizona Four Year Terms for State Legislators, Proposition 1 (September 1950)



1948

  1. Massachusetts Presidential Term Limits, Question 8 (1948)
  2. Washington Repeal of County Officer Term Limits, HJR 4 (1948)


1947

  1. Ohio Issue 2, Judicial Terms and Compensation (1947)


1946

  1. Arizona Four Year Terms for County Officers, Proposition 2 (1946)
  2. Arizona Four Year Terms for State Officers, Proposition 1 (1946)
  3. Wisconsin Sheriff Term Limits Amendment, Question 1 (April 1946)



1944

  1. Florida Term Limits for Persons Appointed or Elected to Fill Vacancies, Amendment 7 (1944)
  2. Idaho Term Limits for State Officers, SJR 1 (1944)





1940

  1. Oregon Removal of Term Limits for Secretary of State and Treasurer, Measure 1 (1940)
  2. Washington Term Limits for County Officers, SJR 1 (1940)



1938

  1. Missouri Sheriffs and Coroners Succession, Issue 9 (1938)
  2. Missouri State Treasurer Succession, Issue 2 (1938)
  3. North Dakota County Officers Election Terms Referendum (1938)



1936

  1. North Dakota County Officials Election Terms Referendum (1936)



1934

  1. Idaho Terms of Office for County Commissioners, SJR 7 (1934)


1933

  1. Arizona Four Year Terms for County Officers, Proposition 1 (October 1933)
  2. Arizona Four Year Terms for Mine Inspector, Proposition 5 (October 1933)
  3. Arizona Four Year Terms for State Legislators, Proposition 6 (October 1933)
  4. Arizona Four Year Terms for State Officers, Proposition 3 (October 1933)


1932

  1. Colorado Four-Year Terms for Certain County Officials, Measure 1 (1932)



1930

  1. North Dakota District Court Judges Terms Referendum (1930)
  2. North Dakota Four Year Term Limit Initiative (1930)
  3. North Dakota Supreme Court Judges Term Limits Referendum (1930)


1929

  1. Wisconsin Sheriff Term Limits Amendment, Question 2 (April 1929)


1928

  1. Idaho Four Year Terms for State Officers, HJR 8 (1928)



1926

  1. Arizona Two Terms Limit for State Officials, Proposition 1 (1926)
  2. North Dakota Tenure of Railroad Commissioners Referendum (1926)


1925

  1. Ohio County Officer Term Limits, Amendment 3 (1925)




1922

  1. Colorado Four-Year Terms for County Officers, Measure 8 (1922)
  2. Colorado Four-Year Terms for Elective State Officers, Measure 9 (1922)
  3. Wisconsin Sheriff Term Limits Amendment, Question 1 (1922)








1915

  1. Ohio County Official Term Lengths, Amendment 2 (1915)


1914

  1. Idaho Extending Terms of State Officers, SJR 4 (1914)



1912

  1. North Dakota Supreme Court Term Limits Referendum (1912)
  2. Washington County Official Term Limits, Amendment to Article XI Sec. 7 (1912)





1908

  1. Idaho Abolish Probate Court, HJR 3 (1908)





1904

  1. Florida County Officer Terms, Amendment 1 (1904)
  2. Idaho Four Year Terms for County Commissioners, HJR 5 (1904)






Before 1900

  1. Florida Legislature Size and Terms of Office, Amendment 2 (October 1890)
  2. Wisconsin Four Year Terms for Senators Amendment, Question 2 (1854)
  3. Wisconsin Legislature Amendment, Question 1 (1881)
  4. Wisconsin Two Year Terms for Assembly Members Amendment, Question 1 (1854)


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Use of term limits

Term limits have a long history: ancient Greece and ancient Rome, two early civilizations which had elected political offices, both imposed limits on some positions. In ancient Athenian democracy, no citizen could serve on the boule more than twice, or be head of the boule more than once. In the Roman Republic, a law was passed imposing a limit of a single term on the office of Censor.

Many modern presidential republics employ term limits for their highest offices. The United States, one of the first countries of the modern era to have elected political offices, has a limit of two terms on its presidency, and on a number of other political offices as well, such as state governors and some state legislators. Formal limits date back to 1776, when limits were placed on serving as Governor of Delaware. Term limits are also common in Latin America, where most countries are also presidential republics. In some countries, such as Mexico, it is strictly forbidden for a person to serve as president on more than one occasion, even if one of the appointments was only temporary.

Countries which operate a parliamentary system of government are less likely to employ term limits on their leaders. This is because such leaders rarely have a set "term" at all — rather, they serve as long as they have the confidence of the legislature, a period which could potentially last indefinitely. Nevertheless, such countries may impose term limits on the holders of other offices -- in republics, for example, a ceremonial presidency may have a term limit, especially if it has reserve powers.

Offices of local government, such as a mayoralty, may also have term limits.

See also: State legislatures with term limits, States with gubernatorial term limits

Arguments

In favor of limits

  • "It prevents incumbents from using the benefits of office to remain in power indefinitely." In some situations, merely being in office provides an elected official with a distinct advantage in further elections. Supporters of term limits argue that this advantage is undemocratic, and means that incumbents no longer fear losing their offices and cease to be concerned with the needs of their constituents. Term limits ensure that all officials are eventually removed from power.
  • "It makes room for fresh candidates, and encourages participation." Imposing term limits on an office ensures that there will always be vacancies for new candidates to pursue. This may encourage citizens who would normally not consider running for office to do so, as they will not be challenging an established, entrenched opponent. Many proponents claim that term limits will increase diversity in a legislature, bringing the law-making body's demographics more in line with those of the general population.
  • "It stops politicians from making choices solely to prolong their career." If a politician can serve as many terms as they wish, they may be tempted to follow policies which will ensure their long-term political survival, rather than policies which further the interests of voters. Supporters of term limits sometimes argue that if politicians know from the beginning of their service that their time in office is limited, they will act differently (and less self-servingly) than “career” legislators.
  • "It reduces the advantage which can be gained by a representative's seniority." In some legislatures, power and influence tend to increase as a legislator gains seniority — a politician who has served many terms will carry more responsibility than one who has just been elected, even if both are representing the same number of voters. If one district continually re-elects the same politician, while another district frequently changes its politician, the first district will have greater sway in the legislature than the second, because its representative has had time to accrue seniority. Term limits ensure that each district has representatives of similar seniority.

Against limits

  • "It is undemocratic." The most common argument against the use of term limits is that it takes away the right of voters to be represented by the politician of their choice. It is argued that if the public wish to re-elect their representative, it is undemocratic to prevent them from doing so. Allow the electorate to do its job, argue opponents, and non-responsive legislators can still be held accountable.
  • "It results in a lack of experienced politicians." Term limit opponents argue that, with experience, comes greater skill. The very use of the term “freshman representative” is indicative of the fact that the first-term legislator is less likely to be able to “get things done” in the legislature. It is further argued that inexperienced politicians will be more reliant on advice and guidance from un-elected officials and lobbyists. Permanent committee staffers, who ostensibly work for the representatives, would become more knowledgeable and powerful than the members themselves. Moreover, lobbyists in the employ of special interests might tend to grow more powerful, as they can offer to “help” inexperienced members gain a foothold. Because both staffers and lobbyists are unelected, opponents argue, term limits are undemocratic because it places more power in the hands of the unelected.
  • "It means that politicians approaching their term limit no longer have to worry about what voters think." Another argument against term limits is that it is the very fact that politicians need to go back to the voters for approval and re-election that keeps them responsive. With term limits, a lame duck legislator no longer has any motivation to continue heeding the concerns of his constituents. In such a circumstance, a legislator could use their last term to set themselves up for a job in the private sector after the end of their legislative career.
  • "It simply results in frequent trading of office between the same people, not an influx of new people." In contrast to the claims that term limits allow new faced to enter politics, opponents claim that there are enough political offices for elected officials to simply "play musical chairs."In response to claims that term limits promote diversity, on August 15, 2006 the United States' National Conference of State Legislatures issued a report at its annual meeting stating that "term limits have not led to significant increases in female or minority representation in state legislatures, according to a survey of the 15 states with term limits."[1]

See also

Term limits

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References