The Republican Liberty Caucus of Ohio announced today its support for the “Eight is Enough Ohio” term limit initiative. This initiative, supported by a newly organized PAC, is opposed to the proposal by the Ohio Constitutional Modernization Commission to move term limits from 8 years to 12 years.

“After 8 years in one chamber, a legislator need only switch chambers or take 4 years off to again serve,” said Bill Yarbrough, Chairman of the Republican Liberty Caucus of Ohio. “When I was in grade school in the 1970s, Bill Batchelder was my State Representative. He just retired from the Speakership of the House in 2014. Batchelder’s periodic respites from the State House didn’t hamper his political career and certainly didn’t deny Ohioans his vast expertise about how state government works. However, term limits do encourage new entrants into state politics through a dramatic increase in primary challenges.”

Fully 78% percent of Ohio voters support keeping term limits at eight years. This means, if the General Assembly wants to weaken term limits and keep power longer, it must make a compelling case for change that seemingly does not exist. Commission members stand to gain professionally from longer term limits, and therefore are not qualified to weigh in on the subject. Ohio is facing issues of real economic importance and legislators seemingly can find no better cause than to enrich their own careers.

“There are good philosophical cases to be made for simply allowing voters to choose who they want without term limits impeding choice,” said Yarbrough. “However, choices are already impeded before the voter even gets to vote. If the Constitutional Modernization Commission actually eliminates gerrymandering and fixes some of the country’s most restrictive ballot access laws for alternative candidates, then let’s talk about relaxing term limits.”


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