Term Limits, gerrymandering, and big money in politics. Think of how wonderful American government would be if we just fixed those three problems. We have been told it would be impossible to do something about all of these issues, but what if it wasn't? What if we didn't have to address each separately but rather could get them all with one shot?
I propose this amendment to the Constitution of the United States of America:
Section 1: No person shall be elected to the House of Representatives more than five times. No person shall be elected to the Senate more than twice.
Section 2: Districts represented by members of Congress, or by members of any state legislative body, shall be compact and composed of contiguous territory. The state shall have the burden of justifying any departures from this requirement by reference to neutral criteria such as natural, political, or historic boundaries or demographic changes. The interest in enhancing or preserving the political power of the party in control of the state government is not such a neutral criterion. *source, retired Justice John Paul Stevens
Section 3: Neither the First Amendment nor any other provision of this Constitution shall be construed to prohibit the Congress or any state from imposing reasonable limits on the amount of money that candidates for public office, or their supporters, may spend in election campaigns. *source, retired Justice John Paul Stevens
Rather than breaking the fight into multiple fronts, let's tie it all together. We have made little headway trying to rally against the big moneyed interests when splitting the issue of American government transparency into individual battles, so perhaps if we make it one issue, we will have a chance.
In a previous post, I explained in detail the amendment process. It is a long, tough road. But, the American people across party lines support these very simple ideas: career politicians are often bad (for every Ted Kennedy we'd lose through this, we'd get rid of 100 Rob Andrews), gerrymandering is deceptive and wrong, and the rich/corporations should not be able to buy elections.
I may be yelling into a hurricane here, but I'll yell until I can't stand anymore because our democracy is crumbling, and I whole-heartedly believe this American Transparency Amendment would save it.