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Thread: Bloomberg - Mayoral Term Limits

  1. #61

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    Quote Originally Posted by ZippyTheChimp View Post
    Silliest thing I've heard all day, but it's only 06:15.
    It just seems like everyone is acting like Bloomberg seeking a third term and asking the city council to change the rules is somehow akin to the watergate scandal. I just don't see what the big deal is. There had been speculation for a year now that he was going to try to run for a third term. The fact is the majority of people in this city support him and his third term according to nearly every single poll I've read. His approval rating is through the roof. If it went to a vote, it would pass anyway so while I agree that skipping a step and going straight to the city council is shady, in the end it just saves time and money. Money can buy exposure but it can't make an entire city like you. If people don't want to vote for him then they shouldn't frickin' vote for him. All this means is he will be on the ballot. All the people complaining about the city council voting on changing the term limits just hate Bloomberg and know that if he is on the ballot he will win. As if Christine Quinn or any of the other gems who were planning to run would turn this city into a utopion society if they were mayor. Please.

  2. #62

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    ^
    Here's the statement you made that I think is silly:
    Quote Originally Posted by spatulashack View Post
    "Whaaaaa he broke the rules, whaaaaaa,"
    Is that what you stand behind? Someone complaining about a law (not a rule) being broken (or maneuvered around) is bawling like a baby?

    Quote Originally Posted by spatulashack View Post
    It just seems like everyone is acting like Bloomberg seeking a third term and asking the city council to change the rules is somehow akin to the watergate scandal.
    Justifying it by comparing it to something that no one mentioned is a straw man.

    I just don't see what the big deal is.
    A law has to be changed; it's a big deal.

    The fact is the majority of people in this city support him and his third term according to nearly every single poll I've read.
    Polls are not referendums or elections. There have already been two referendums on the issue.

    His approval rating is through the roof.
    You change laws based on personal popularity?

    If it went to a vote, it would pass anyway so while I agree that skipping a step and going straight to the city council is shady,
    The nutshell.

    in the end it just saves time and money.
    If he's so popular, why even have the election? Save even more time and money.

    All the people complaining about the city council voting on changing the term limits just hate Bloomberg and know that if he is on the ballot he will win.
    I don't hate Bloomberg at all. In my opinion, his record as mayor has been mixed.

    You're ignoring a criteria for any law. It should apply equally, no matter who the person is. Woul'd you feel the same about the City Council changing the term-limit law if Bloomberg was a lousy mayor?

    And you're being short-sighted in just considering a Bloomberg third term. More important, the Council members also get term-limits removed. So they get to run three, four, or five times. The CC makes the laws; they have just as much impact on the city as the mayor.

  3. #63

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    Zippy, I honestly agree with everything you said. It IS outrageous that the term limit change is happening this way. And while I am in a way playing devil's advocate, my comparison of crying about the term limits to watergate was not meant to be a straw man. It was an intentional exageration of what I feel is overreaction by people on the forum. There are no laws being broken here. There is an attempt to CHANGE the law and while I think it would be lovely if our democracy allowed every single change in law to come to a vote from the public, it just can't happen that way all the time. I would have loved to have been able to vote on the AIG bailout. In the end, it was in the hands of people in power, much like this is in the hands of city council. I'm not saying it's right. I'm just puzzled by the intense reaction when there are so many more appalling and outrageous things that happen in this city that people seem to ignore. Shelly not even allowing congestion pricing to come to a vote tops my list of most outrageous things to happen in the city in the past 5 years. This term extension doesn't even come close.

  4. #64

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    Spatulashack, I don't understand how you can keep insisting that there are no laws being broken here.

    Read Chapter 50, sections 1137 and 1138 of the New York City Charter:

    " § 1137. Public policy. It is hereby declared to be the public policy of the city of New York to limit to not more than eight consecutive years the time elected officials can serve as mayor, public advocate, comptroller, borough president and council member so that elected representatives are "citizen representatives" who are responsive to the needs of the people and are not career politicians.


    § 1138. Term limits. Notwithstanding any provision to the contrary contained in this charter, no person shall be eligible to be elected to or serve in the office of mayor, public advocate, comptroller, borough president or council member if that person had previously held such office for two or more full consecutive terms (including in the case of council member at least one four-year term), unless one full term or more has elapsed since that person last held such office; provided, however, that in calculating the number of consecutive terms a person has served, only terms commencing on or after January 1, 1994 shall be counted."

    What do you see as the difference between "changing" that law and breaking it?

  5. #65

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    Also, I'm curious- how long have you lived in this city? I was personally a supporter of congestion pricing, but to say the failure of that is "the most outrageous" thing to happen in this city in five years seems rather odd.

  6. #66
    King Omega XVI OmegaNYC's Avatar
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    I know this may sound like a silly question, but if the policy on term limits get repealed without the the public's vote, can the state do anything about it? For example, will the state say the new law is invalid and it should be placed on the ballot in the next election? Or is this stricky a NYC matter?

  7. #67

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    Quote Originally Posted by spatulashack View Post
    It was an intentional exageration of what I feel is overreaction by people on the forum. There are no laws being broken here.
    You're assuming the overreaction is because of Bloomberg, and not the law.

    There is an attempt to CHANGE the law and while I think it would be lovely if our democracy allowed every single change in law to come to a vote from the public, it just can't happen that way all the time.
    I also used the term maneuver around the law - and this sometimes makes people more cynical than violating the law.

    If, as you say, it was common knowledge earlier this year that Bloomberg might seek a third term, then there was plenty of time to get a term-limits referendum question on the Nov 4th ballot. Now it's too late, and with people distracted by the general election and the credit crisis, it's the perfect opportunity for Bloomberg and some members of the CC to run this through.

    Pardon my cynicism.

    I would have loved to have been able to vote on the AIG bailout. In the end, it was in the hands of people in power, much like this is in the hands of city council.
    Maybe you'll get a chance...


    October 8, 2008, 11:19 am

    State Bill Would Require Term Limit Referendum

    By Jeremy W. Peters

    ALBANY — A Brooklyn state legislator plans to introduce a bill that would block Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg in his attempt to seek another term as mayor without first winning a public referendum.

    Hakeem S. Jeffries, a Democrat, will introduce the bill before a special session of the Legislature convenes on Nov. 18. Mr. Jeffries and other community activists who are opposing Mr. Bloomberg’s campaign to rewrite the city’s term limit laws are planning an announcement on Wednesday at 1 p.m. at City Hall.

    Mr. Jeffries’s bill would create a new state law requiring any municipality with term limits to hold a public referendum before making any changes that would affect how long elected officials can serve.

    Because the law would apply statewide, it would supersede any law passed by the City Council. That could throw up a road block for Mr. Bloomberg, who under current law is not allowed to run for another term as mayor. Mr. Bloomberg supports having the City Council pass a law that would change the city’s current term limit restrictions from two terms to three terms.

    Word of Mr. Jeffries’s bill came as opposition to Mr. Bloomberg’s bid for a third term appeared to be solidifying on other fronts on Wednesday. The Rev. Al Sharpton said Wednesday morning that he was leaning against the mayor’s plan and instead favored a referendum.

    And Mr. Bloomberg has not yet resolved an apparent rift with Ronald S. Lauder, the billionaire cosmetics heir and term-limits champion who said on Sunday that he had reservations about the mayor’s proposal. Mr. Bloomberg has said he prefers a plan that would permanently rewrite the city’s term-limits law. But Mr. Lauder, who financed the 1993 campaign to create term limits in the city, said he would support only a temporary change that would apply only to Mr. Bloomberg and other city officials currently in office.

    * Copyright 2008 The New York Times Company

  8. #68

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    Quote Originally Posted by Schadenfrau View Post
    Spatulashack, I don't understand how you can keep insisting that there are no laws being broken here.

    Read Chapter 50, sections 1137 and 1138 of the New York City Charter:

    " § 1137. Public policy. It is hereby declared to be the public policy of the city of New York to limit to not more than eight consecutive years the time elected officials can serve as mayor, public advocate, comptroller, borough president and council member so that elected representatives are "citizen representatives" who are responsive to the needs of the people and are not career politicians.


    § 1138. Term limits. Notwithstanding any provision to the contrary contained in this charter, no person shall be eligible to be elected to or serve in the office of mayor, public advocate, comptroller, borough president or council member if that person had previously held such office for two or more full consecutive terms (including in the case of council member at least one four-year term), unless one full term or more has elapsed since that person last held such office; provided, however, that in calculating the number of consecutive terms a person has served, only terms commencing on or after January 1, 1994 shall be counted."

    What do you see as the difference between "changing" that law and breaking it?
    I fail to see any sense in this question. If we change the drinking law so that those who are 18 and over can drink and someone who is 18 has a shot of whiskey in a bar, they aren't breaking the law. The term limits aren't the United States Constitution. I also never said that the failure of congestion pricing itself was the most outrageous thing to happen in 5 years, I said that Silver playing God and not allowing it to even come to a vote was politically outrageous. I'll say it again, I agree with everyone that I would have preferred this had come to a public vote. But like most other changes in policy, it didn't.

  9. #69
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    And of course IF Bloomberg runs for term #3 then it will be a fair fight on an even playing field ...

    Allies Say Mayor Would Spend $80 Million on 3rd-Term Bid

    By DAVID W. CHEN and RAYMOND HERNANDEZ
    NY TIMES

    If he is allowed to run for a third term, at least $20 million of Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg’s campaign funds
    would be used to pound away at his most likely opponent ...

  10. #70
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    Naughty Mayor: Currying favor while abusing one's power ...

    Groups See Ethics Violation in Mayor’s Pledge to Lauder

    NY TIMES
    By MICHAEL BARBARO
    Published: October 9, 2008

    Two civic groups said on Thursday that Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg violated the city’s ethics laws when he pledged to put Ronald S. Lauder on a charter revision commission in exchange for his support for the mayor’s third-term effort ...

    Mr. Lauder had vowed to oppose the mayor’s plan to make a three-term limit permanent, until Wednesday, when Mr. Bloomberg promised to appoint him to a charter revision commission that could return the law to its original limit of two terms.

    The civic groups contend that the deal violates a provision of the City Charter, which says that a mayor cannot “use or attempt to use his or her position as a public servant to obtain any financial gain, contract, license, privilege or other private or personal advantage, direct or indirect, for the public servant.” ...

  11. #71

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    That seems pretty clear cut. I'm interested to hear what Bloomberg's defense will be. My money is on the mayor ignoring any sort of legal actions taken against him, as seems to be quite the trend lately.

  12. #72
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    The one ray of light I see in Bloomberg's stated goal to run for term #3 is that it's an indication that things aren't moving in TOO horrible of a direction economically -- otherwise Bloomberg wouldn't be running in NYC, but instead be moving for good to his big digs down in Bermuda.

  13. #73

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    NY1

    Updated 9:32 AM

    Quinn To Side With Mayor In His Push For Third Term



    NY1 has learned that City Council Speaker Christine Quinn will be supporting the mayor's plan to overturn the city's term-limits law.

    Quinn had been on the fence since Mayor Michael Bloomberg made the surprise decision nine days ago to seek a change to the city's term limit law which, if enacted, would allow Bloomberg and more than three dozen other city officials to run for for re-election next year.

    She has said if the law is amended, she would seek another term in office and re-election as council speaker. She cannot run for City Council again unless this law is amended.

    Quinn will officially make the announcement at 12:30 p.m. today and NY1 will carry it live.

    The debate continued this weekend over whether city politicians or voters should decide whether term limits are extended. NY1 has surveyed all 51 council members and their constituents, and Cindi Avila filed the following report on how one of Queens’s most vocal councilmen is keeping mum.

    "I've always opposed term limits," said Queens Councilman Peter Vallone, Jr. when he was interviewed Saturday.

    However, that did not mean that Vallone, who represents District 22 in northwestern Queens, made up his mind about the latest effort to extend term limits, as proposed by Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

    According to sources, Council Speaker Christine Quinn will reveal her position on term limits Sunday at 12:30 p.m. But Vallone is making no public stances.

    "I think most of us agree extending term limits from 8 years to 12 years is the right thing to do. It's the best thing for the city,” said Vallone. “The problem is the mayor's proposal may not be the right way to do it."

    Bloomberg's proposal would have the city council vote to extend term limits and appoint a charter revision commission to put the issue back before the voters at a later time.

    The mayor says there's not enough time to get the proposal on the ballot in November. But Vallone said calling a special election may not be the answer either.

    "Not many people would come out, number one, and it would cost $15 million at a time when we may be decided to cut teachers or raise taxes,” said Vallone. “It is the right thing to do? Very good question."

    On Saturday, Vallone was not ready to answer that question just yet.

    "I'm undecided, because there are good people and good arguments on both sides of this issue and I intend to give them the consideration they really deserve," said Vallone.

    In Vallone’s district, voter's reactions to extending term limits were mixed Saturday.

    "I'm against term limits always because you don't have the right to vote for who you want," said one voter.

    "He's been a good mayor and if he wants to stay he should be able to," said another voter. “I think [the decision on term limits] should be a vote by the public."

    "I don't think it's right that he's not letting us vote on it like he has in the past,” said a third. “I don't think it's good."

    "And I think it gives an unacceptable standard for other offices where we should be able to choose whether term limits are acceptable, and it creates an unfair precedent," said a fourth.

    One constituent, Helen Mourtos, wanted to directly address her councilman, saying, "Definitely I would recommend to Miss Quinn and Mr. Vallone as a citizen of New York City to try and do anything possible."

    Vallone said he is listening to such concerns.

    "I'm in the process of deciding what my community really wants me to do," said Vallone.

    As for the other council members who remain undecided, NY1 will visit their communities to get their views on the issue as well.


    Copyright © 2008 NY1 News. All rights reserved.

  14. #74
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    Quinn is live right now on NY1 -- 12:50 Sunday afternoon -- announcing her support for Bloomberg's Three Term Extension proposal.

    Public Hearings will be held this Thursday & Friday (info at www.nyc.gov ).

  15. #75

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    "Indispensable" Leaders: George Washington's Lesson for Mike Bloomberg

    Bill Squadron
    Posted October 11, 2008 | 06:05 PM (EST)

    It is no secret that Americans today have little regard for either the President or Congress. This fundamental lack of trust in our elected officials is part of the crisis of confidence that pervades the nation.

    In the shadow of the public's disdain for our leaders, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg's attempt to change the term-limits law so that he can run for re-election is particularly disturbing.

    Most observers believe Bloomberg has been an excellent Mayor, and his approval ratings in polls suggest that New Yorkers agree. Even more importantly, as a non-partisan leader - he has been a Democrat, a Republican, and an Independent at various times in his life - he is one of the few public officials who seemed to be dedicated to good government, non-political problem-solving, sound management and the public interest.

    But now even he is on the brink of betraying the public trust. In 1993 New York voters, by public referendum, established a two-term limit for all city elected officials, including the Mayor and City Council. The voters reaffirmed that position by rejecting - again by public referendum - proposed changes to the law several years later.

    Bloomberg's second term will finish in January 2010. But he has asked the City Council to change the term limits law to allow elected officials - including himself and all 51 members of the Council - to serve three terms. And even though the law was established by the vote of all New Yorkers, it is legal for the City Council to change the law, with the Mayor's signature.

    Until he decided he wanted to keep his job, Bloomberg had previously declared the idea of changing the term limits law -- other than by another public referendum -- to be "disgusting." City Council Speaker Christine Quinn had previously vowed never to change the term limits law without putting it to all the voters. Now she isn't sure.

    Mike Bloomberg's rationale for this proposition is that the financial crisis requires his leadership for another term. According to him, no one else - including prospective candidates like Comptroller Bill Thompson, Congressman Anthony Weiner, or Quinn - can compare with him when it comes to steering the city through the aftermath of Wall Street's collapse.

    Bloomberg may be right about that. He may be the best-equipped person for the job, especially at this moment.

    Or he may be wrong. We really don't know how a different leader might step up to manage the city.

    But it doesn't matter whether he is right or wrong. That's not the point. What matters is that New Yorkers have, through the democratic process, established and reaffirmed their support for a two-term limit. To undermine that decision because he - Michael Bloomberg - believes he is the only person for the job, would do profound damage to our most fundamental principles.

    In fact, it is noteworthy that some historians believe that George Washington's greatest act was voluntarily stepping down after two terms to assure the peaceful transition of power - a critical step in assuring that our nation, in its infancy, would endure.

    In Founding Brothers, Joseph Ellis wrote that Washington was "the American Zeus, Moses and Cincinnatus all rolled into one." Ellis observed that, in voluntarily relinquishing power despite seeming indispensable, Washington "became the supreme example of the leader who could be trusted with power because he was so ready to give it up." In so doing, George Washington established the "elemental principle" that "presidents, no matter how indispensable, were inherently disposable."

    No individual - not Washington, not Bloomberg -- is more important than our democratic process.

    Bloomberg argues that the voters would still have the right to choose his opponent in the election for a third Bloomberg term. This is an insulting argument, and the Mayor knows it. Does he not think that voters understood - when they passed the term-limits law - that the alternative would be simply to vote against an incumbent seeking a third term? Of course they realized that. But they voted for term limits because the power of incumbency in New York State is so unjustly imbalanced that challengers have little chance (especially against a mayor reportedly planning to spend $80 million of his own money on his campaign).

    New Yorkers passed term limits because they believed it was the only way to assure turnover in our government officials. Some will argue - and I would agree - that term limits are far less desirable than an open, fair process where challengers to elected officials have a legitimate shot, and voters can make an informed decision. Sadly, that is not where we are today and that is why many jurisdictions have reluctantly adopted term limits as the alternative.

    Mike Bloomberg has another 15 months in office to help lead New Yorkers through this tough time. He should focus on that, and back away from this ill-conceived idea.

    Mayor Bloomberg has a sterling reputation today and has justly earned the trust of the public. We have very few leaders today who can fairly claim that. We cannot afford to have one of them become just another politician. Bloomberg has shown us he is better than that.


    * Copyright © 2008 HuffingtonPost.com, Inc.


    GW actually did it twice. The first time in 1783, at a tavern in New York.

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