Amendments would shift our government back to the people

Prior to resigning from Congress, 12th Congressional District Rep. Tom Marino, who represents our region, introduced a constitutional amendment to institute four-year terms for members of the U.S. House of Representatives.

His resignation does not change the common sense wisdom of this proposed amendment.

As it stands now, members serve two-year terms. That puts them in a perpetual cycle of campaigning, which leads to endless dependence on fundraising and campaigning.

The end result is that the front row of influence is reserved for lobbyists and actions that make an impression on voters. The back row of influence is reserved for addressing issues with a long-term, common-sense, problem-solving approach.

The end result is very often the gridlock that is so prevalent in Washington.

While the result of the amendment would be more job security for representatives in the form of a four-year term, it would greatly improve the legislative process.

And if such an amendment were paired with term limits of, say, 12 years, the problems that come with the career politician mindset would be addressed.

Marino came into office promising to serve no more than 12 years and recently resigned after being elected to a fifth two-year term.

He also recently introduced legislation to impose term limits and ensure Congress considers one legislative subject at a time.

For those who doubt the need or wisdom of all three of these measures, we would refer them to the everyday political machinations that dominate far too much of the House agenda these days.

All of these elected officials are supposed to be stewards of their constituents, not guardians of their own political livelihoods.

These changes would greatly increase the shifting of priorities to a government of, for and by the people.