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Term Limit Initiative Gaining Momentum
Eight years. That's how long a state lawmaker would be allowed to serve Illinois should a ballot initiative go through in November.
Republican gubernatorial candidate Bruce Rauner is spearheading the effort but Rauner's Democratic opponent Governor Pat Quinn has also recently stated publicly that he supports term limits.
However, this initiative isn't applicable to the governor's office but rather to state senators and representatives.
The petition to limit the time state senators and representatives can serve to eight years is gaining momentum.
"As screwed up as Illinois is they should only get four years," Kevin Russell, who supports term limits, said.
Enough signatures will get the question of term limits for state legislators on the November ballot.
"You restrict people who can just keep coming in and in and in and they're not really doing anything they're just kind of sitting there getting a paycheck, Garrett Wilson, who also supports term limits said.
Carol Lehmkuhl also signed the petition on Saturday.
"They just need to have new people because it's the same ones all the time and they don't do anything different," Lehmkuhl said.
"They say they're public servants but they're not serving the public right now," Rose Kelly, who also signed the term limit petition, said.
There are some people who are against term limits.
Republican U.S. Senator Mark Kirk has spoken out against term limits, saying if voters really want certain politicians out of office they should vote against them.
But some say that's not always possible.
"Especially if they keep redrawing area lines every year to make it so that if they're a Democrat they get all Democratic voters," Wilson said.
Petitioners need nearly 300,000 to get the question of term limits on the ballot.
Supporters of the initiative say they don't think that's going to be a problem.
Should this initiative for legislative term limits go through I t wouldn't be retroactive, so it's not like legislators who have already been in office for more than eight years would immediately have to step down.
As far as term limits for governor, that is not something that can be decided by voters rather the legislature.
Petitioners must present the nearly 300,000 signatures to the State Board of Elections by May 4th. That's exactly six months before the November election.