Term limits are getting a makeover after voters overwhelmingly approved Proposition 28 during the June primary. Under the provisions of this initiative, lawmakers will see the amount of time they can serve in the Legislature reduced from 14 years to 12 years. That being said, the measure also stipulates that lawmakers can serve all 12 of those years in one house, either the Senate or Assembly. The state Democratic Party, as well as labor, business and good-government groups, were all supporters of the measure.
This measure changes an initiative that voters passed in 1990 that states lawmakers were only allowed to serve no more than six years in the Assembly and eight years in the state Senate. Those days are now over, as legislators will simple be able to serve longer in one house.
The Bee reports that “Proponents said the measure would result in more experienced lawmakers and legislative leaders, which they contended was a necessary counterbalance to lobbyists who have become increasingly powerful since voters passed the current term limits law in 1990.”
As a counter point, Jon Fleischman, a spokesman for the small No on 28 campaign, commented that “The public is being fooled into thinking this measure strengthens term limits when it does the exact opposite.” The fact that legislators overall will see the amount of time they can serve reduced is probably a big factor in the initiative’s support at the polls.
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