Politics

              President Barack Obama holds his shave ice as he exits Island Snow to greet people waiting outside, Thursday, Jan. 3, 2013, in Kailua, Hawaii. President Obama and the first family are in Hawaii for a holiday vacation. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

New York congressman introduces bill to abolish presidential term limits

Photo of Patrick Howley
Patrick Howley
Political Reporter

New York Democratic Rep. Jose Serrano reintroduced a bill in Congress on Friday to repeal the 22nd Amendment, which places term limits on the U.S. presidency.

The bill, which has been referred to committee, would allow Barack President Obama to become the first president since Franklin Roosevelt to seek a third term in office.

H.J. Res. 15 proposes “an amendment to the Constitution of the United States to repeal the twenty-second article of amendment, thereby removing the limitation on the number of terms an individual may serve as President.”

The bill is a reintroduction of H.J. Res. 17, which Serrano introduced in Congress in January 2011. It was referred to the House judiciary committee, but did not make it to a floor vote.

Repealing the 22nd Amendment has been a longtime goal of Serrano’s, regardless of the sitting president’s political party. Serrano proposed similar resolutions in 1997 and 1999, during  Bill Clinton’s administration, and in 2001, 2003, 2005, and 2007, during George W. Bush’s administration. He proposed the repeal again in 2009 after Obama took office.

None of his proposals has ever made it to a floor vote.

Democratic Maryland Rep. Steny Hoyer also repeatedly proposed repealing the 22nd Amendment during both the Clinton and Bush administrations.

Current Republican Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell sponsored a bill to repeal the amendment in 1995.

The 22nd Amendment was passed by Congress in 1947 and ratified by 41 states by 1951. The last president before Roosevelt to prepare for a campaign for a third term was Woodrow Wilson, who pulled out of the 1920 nominating race to avoid deadlocking the Democratic convention in San Francisco.

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