Congress is an entity conformed by an elected group of individuals who have to design and enact the laws for a country. Also, it is pertinent to mention that the American Congress structure inspired other countries such as Colombia, Mexico, Philippines, Brazil, etc; and that all of them have the House of Representatives (or Chamber of Representatives in the Colombian case) and the Senate.
However, in a considerable number of democracies such as Colombia or the United States, congressmen and congresswomen have undefined periods for being elected, giving as a consequence that sometimes they are not able to quit from their post. Therefore, most of the countries should implement term limit laws due to the following reasons.
First, a term limit law can encourage democracy. A solid democracy is represented by the highest number of individuals participating in public affairs and it includes a wide range of people regardless of age, gender, ethnical origin, sexual orientation, etc. According to Robert Dahl, a solid democracy could be a complete abstraction and we must consider the concept of a polyarchy that could be easy to reach and most of people can intervene or participate in meetings that concern the whole country.
Hence, a term limit law is a clear feature that shapes Dahl’s polyarchy which all people without considering their origins can have stimulations to create good decision-making and in case a group of members of the Congress expires their period they would be replaced and creating excellent conditions for democracy,
Second, this law can encourage people to participate in the Congress, no matter which country. A term limit law can create the best framework for individuals who want to create laws for the benefit of society, especially younger people who are concerned about topics such as unemployment and the environment.
One common thought about politicians in Congress is that most of the congressmen and congresswomen are old people. It is not a secret that most of the Congressmen and Congresswomen in the United States such as Mitch McConnel are more than 70 years old and the average age is 60 years old.
Despite that an elderly person in Congress may show experience and respect towards others, it is necessary that a new point of view from younger people should be taken into account. As a result, a term limit law can induce more young people to participate in Congress meetings and discussions because elderly people don’t represent the vast majority of the population in most of the countries.
A term limit can shrink corruption. In case that there are term limits in Congress, it would discourage acts of corruption. Due to the fact that Congress members have less time on the post, they will have less time to think about themselves and more to think about the situations that society demands.
As a result, the politicians will mind about people rather than designing and creating acts of corruption, and in case of being tempted to take or giving bribes, as well as other acts considered as negative or corrupt, they could be prosecuted or labeled as enemies of the society.
Term limits have a lot of benefits for democracy in any country; however, it is essential to consider that the term limit implies a will of the whole Congress to be implemented. For a transcendental project, it will require a strong force of will of all members and they may differ in a lot of topics and discussions.
For example in the Colombian Congress, there are members such as Alvaro Uribe or Jorge Robledo who are from different political parties (Alvaro Uribe is from a right to far-right political party while Robledo is from a center-left party) and their discourses are predominant in Colombian politics. Thus, Robledo’s political party would accept a term limit law in Colombian Congress, Uribe’s political party would think twice to accept that kind of law. As a consequence, a term limits law may be complicated to be implemented due to conflict of interest among members of Congress.
To conclude, a term limit law in a Congress, no matter which country, is an excellent tool that can be used to materialize polyarchy and stimulate political participation from many sectors of the society, but it requires strong political compromise and support from the members of the present Congress.