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Tuesday, 03 February 2015 14:37
Questions of Term Limits for Louisiana legislators
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Limited term limits?
louisiana-legislatureAll members of the Louisiana Legislature are up for re-election this fall unless they are term-limited. But being term-limited in one legislative body frees them up to pull a switcheroo.

In other words, a term-limited House member can run for the Senate and vice-versa. Government watchers say it is a loophole in the term limits law that needs to be fixed and that a term-limited state legislator should have to sit out one term before running again for another state legisltive office, wheter it be to the Senate or the House.
Other pundits contend that if a legislator is going to run for a “higher office,” that is okay. An example would be a term-limited state representative running for the state Senate.
But a term-limited senator running for a House seat, which would be a lower office, should not be allowed. That’s where things could get a bit murky in amending the term-limits law should taking a look at the law comes to pass.
Still, there are those who are opposed to term- limits and contend that the voters have the final say about whether someone should be returned to office or elected to a new one. And, they emphasize that term limits rids legislative bodies of valuable experience.
The argument persists by many, however, that an incumbent has a distinct advantage over a challenger, who has never held elected office when it comes to name recognition and raising campaign funds.
It is a controversy that will likely not be resolved any time soon. One would be hard-pressed to find many legislators who would put a restriction on their ability to seek a another legislative office.
Should a term-limited state legislator have to sit out one term before running for any state legislative office? That is the $64,000 question.
State legislators can serve three consecutive terms (12 years) before they are term-limited.

Lou Gehrig Burnett

Lou Gehrig Burnett is the publisher of Fax-Net, a North-Louisiana newsletter.

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