The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

March 19, 2013

Our View: Better approach to limits


The Joplin Globe

— Many mistakes have been avoided by listening to the voice of experience.  That’s why we think Missourians would benefit if lawmakers were allowed to serve longer in the House or Senate.

A good solution is a bill, already passed in the House, that does not allow more total time in the Legislature but does let lawmakers choose where they seek to spend their time.

Currently, lawmakers generally are limited to eight years in the House and eight years in the Senate. A proposed constitutional amendment would let officials serve 16 years in the Legislature. The time could be spent entirely in one chamber or split between the two.

House members passed the measure 121-31 earlier in March, sending it to the Senate. The proposal would appear on the ballot if it passes the Legislature.

Why should a member of the House be forced to run for Senate if he or she wants to remain in the Legislature? Ultimately we are losing good leaders and replacing them with freshmen legislators.

Backers of the proposal say the change would allow the Legislature to operate better.

We agree.

The Senate should pass the bill and send it on to the voters to make the final decision.