Bell Curve The Law Talking Guy Raised by Republicans U.S. West
Well, he's kind of had it in for me ever since I accidentally ran over his dog. Actually, replace "accidentally" with "repeatedly," and replace "dog" with "son."

Friday, May 19, 2006

The Term Limit Shuffle

It's getting out of hand in California. Term limits were never a good idea, and now the unintended consequences have become laughable.

Here's the two step:
State Insurance Commissioner John Garamendi is running for Lieutenant Governor
Lieutenant Governor Cruz Bustamante is running for State Insurance Commissioner

Here's the three step:
Attorney General Bill Lockyer is Running for Treasurer
Treasurer Phil Angelides is Running for Governor
and former Governor Jerry Brown is running for Attorney General (he's been termed out of the Mayorship of Oakland.)

And there's a bunch of State Senators doing the do-si-do with members of the State Assembly. It's time to end the madness, time to revert to the current Federal system and end term limits on all but the Governor himself.


Anonymous said...

Another thing is at work. Democrats practically run CA as a one-party state, but the party is not united. So deals are made. There are basically two slates on the Democratic primary in June '06, one maverick/independent set and one set of candidates backed by the main machine - Feintstein, Boxer, Pelosi, and the unions.
Race Inside / Outside
Gov. Angelides / Westly
Lt. Gov Speier/Garamendi
Atty Gen Delgadillo/ Brown
Tres. Lockyer/EMPTY
Ins. Cm. Bustamante/EMPTY
(Both Lockyer and Bustamante were basically offered those posts so they wouldn't run for Governor).

Obviously, as you can tell, I will be supporting the "outsider" candidates.


// posted by LTG

Anonymous said...

Also Jane Harman / Marcy Winograd in CA-36. That's where I'll be posting from next... 

// posted by Roving Citizen

eiscremeluvr said...

So Dr.,

'What's your impact?' This choreography seems a bit silly, but so what? It is this dance, after all, that gives LTG and others the ability to vote for the 'outsiders' this time around, no?

Anonymous said...

To me, the problem with term limits is that I would prefer to see legislators have the ability to develop competence and independence. Today, they are totally dependent on parties and lobbyists for money and information. Such frequent changes also are bad for institutions like this. 

// posted by LTG

Dr. Strangelove said...

eiscremeluvr: without term limits, politicians would still be forced to seek re-election for their original offices, so LTG would still be able to vote for the outsiders. Yes, with term limits, those politicians technically lose their incumbent advantage... but since they are already incumbents with name recognition (compared to the outsiders) I suspect the dance allows them to keep much of that advantage. Essentially, incumbents just switch jobs.

The impact, to me, is this: I believe certain jobs, such as Treasurer, Atty. General, and Insurance Commissioner, require some specialized competence, and an officeholder can become better at to his job over time. That skill is lost when they are forced to swap jobs. So the term limits seem to be a blunder. Not only do we still have career politicians, but now we lose institutional memory and expertise (such as it is) and as LTG pointed out, the party machine is even more in control.

The dance itself is not really the issue--it just highlights the fact that the desired benefits of term limits have failed to materialize, but the unpleasant side-effects have.