ElectionsInfo.net     An Internet archive of election results and analysis

ElectionsInfo

United States

International

Search

   The Second Term Curse

NEWS INFORMATION

Parent

Parent

News Date

10/30/2005 9:00 am

Author

Media

Category

Perspective

Database Record

Entered 10/31/2005, Updated 10/31/2005

Original Article

Link

Description

In 1797, George Washington quietly returned to his Mount Vernon home after completing his second term as President of the United States. Washington could have easily been elected for a third term, however, chose to quietly step aside, creating the tradition of American Presidents serving only twice in office. This precedent stood for a century and a half, until, much to the chagrin of the Republican Party, FDR decided to run for a third term in 1940. After Roosevelt’s death in 1945, the Republicans began almost immediately to work on amending the Constitution to translate Washington’s precedent into law. Whether the Republicans’ motivation was one of trying to prevent a de facto “American aristocracy” where Presidents would rule for life, or merely an attempt to break the Democratic Party’s domination of the political landscape is a subject of debate to this day. Nonetheless, beginning with its passage by the Congress in 1947, and final ratification by three fourths of the states in 1951, the 22^nd Amendment was born. Respect for the tradition set by Washington aside, it is time to reopen the discussion of the merits of the 22^nd Amendment in light of the 50 years of political turmoil it has created.


NEWS OF NEWS

Date

Category

Headline


DISCUSSION

All information on this site is © ElectionsInfo.net and should not be used without attribution.