Would you like to see a referendum on term
limits for the offices of mayor and aldermen?
Are you in favor of term limits?
Louis X. Carver: “I would say about 16 years because when one administration goes out, the other administration has to have time to actually get whatever plan they have into motion. So by time the first four years is over, the next four years they are moving into getting their program started. If it is a good mayor, give him enough time to do something positive with the city. Then again if it’s a mayor who isn’t doing anything, the populace probably will take him out. If the populace isn’t smart enough to take him out, we would have a system in place. After 16 years he would automatically be out.”
Velma McClain: “I think eight years is long enough. If they are not doing the job, I think they should be voted out.”
Stan Stubbs: “I don’t think it’s a matter of term limits. I think it’s a matter of the people making a decision and praying and focusing on the issues. If that person is doing the job, then people should vote?”that is where our rights are?”and make those decisions.
AWN: What length for terms would you consider?
“That is hard to say because if you look at the fact that Clinton was in office for two terms, and he was doing well, regardless to any challenges, but because of limitations he could not continue. Bush is doing well to a point?”there are still some issues there. You know we still have to follow through with the term. But again, the budget was balanced with Clinton. Now we’re in a deficit with Bush. [Harold] Washington was in office and he did extremely well; he ran two terms, and he died in the second term. He made an impact, but the problem is he couldn’t complete what he started. If you look at other mayors?”Bradley in L.A., Jackson in Atlanta?”Bradley was there in L.A. 20 years, so it’s a matter of doing a good job.”
James West: “Well I feel that as far as term limits go, it’s more a situation of entrenchment in the city of Chicago. Whether or not the people who are supposed to vote will go out and decide who will be the leader as the mayor and who has their best interests in mind. The informed public is the best source of whether or not a public figure should have terms or not. If we’re informed, we should be able to keep a good person in, but unfortunately party politics plays such a large part in Chicago and in money, of course. The best person doesn’t necessarily get in because of the money situation. If you don’t have the dollars behind you, then maybe the absolute worst person gets in and becomes entrenched, and you can’t get them out. It costs millions of dollars to run. So unlike what the nation was founded on?”not popularity but knowing what the issues are and running on the issues. We run popularity races. There are pros and cons to having term limits. You would keep these dynasties at bay, like the Daley dynasty. But at the same time we might get a Bush dynasty, where you have father and son and grandsons and things like that. You know, each one do their term and the next one takes over. I think it’s more about an informed public voting on issues that relate to them.”
? Note: We welcome suggestions for questions you would like to see asked. This week’s question was submitted by recent STREETBEAT participant Eunice Wigfall.