Opinion: A case against term limits

By former Assemblyman Steven Sanders

It has been said that the profession of politics is the second oldest one and regarded on about par with the oldest. Politicians are often times reviled beyond any logical reason. If you are unhappy in life, blame a politician. If you feel overburdened, blame a politician.

But too frequently some public officials give good reason for this antipathy by doing corrupt things. While all professions have their bad players, when a politician is caught with his/her hand in the cookie jar, the rest are tarnished and brought down in the eyes of the public.

It is little wonder that the proposition to impose strict term limits is so popular. Of course, it is also entirely undemocratic and occasionally destructive. Dan Garodnick is a case in point.

Dan has been our City Councilman for 11 years. He has effectively represented our community with intelligence, passion and unquestioned integrity. We sorely need those traits in our government leaders today. But he is in his last year as our local representative. You will not be able to vote for him again and our community will be deprived of an exemplary public official and advocate, because of arbitrary term limits.

I understand the lure of limiting the tenure of public officials. Some succumb to complacency in office and yet face only token political opposition.

Some are corrupted by the length of time in power and forget they are the servants of the people and not the other way around. In a perfect world, the voters would discard such officeholders who have stopped doing their job. But statistics prove time and again that incumbents get re-elected at a rate of over 90 percent no matter what.

But back to Dan. He is an exceptional and all too rare breed of public official. He is as humble now as the day that he began in office on January 1, 2006. He remains as enthusiastic about government as a vehicle for good as he was then and arguably even more effective. In short, he is in his prime.

To lose Dan Garodnick from public service now would have been like the Yankees having to cut Derek Jeter after only twelve years. Fortunately, Jeter stayed with the Yankees for 20 years and soon will be enshrined in the Baseball Hall of Fame. Some of his best years were in his last six or seven.

But this is politics.

Dan will be prematurely off our team after this final year. The question is can he find some other position on the political field and continue to represent us in some fashion?

Besides the City Council, there are other borough wide and city wide offices to be won in November, including the office of mayor. So it is conceivable that Dan might still be able to go to bat for us. Let’s hope he can stay in the game!


7 thoughts on “Opinion: A case against term limits

  1. Are you kidding me? He already went bonkers when Bloomberg amended laws to get a 3rd term, but then turned around and used that to his advantage for a 3rd term (he loves it all of a sudden?).

    Garodnick (the Belle of the REBNY Gala) is as corrupt as they come, and has done absolutely nothing for pcvst in many years. Anyone who lives here and knows the truth will never cast a vote for Dan Garodnick ever again.

  2. There should be term limits on every political position. The founding fathers never envisioned professional politicians like Schumer or Maloney. It was supposed to be a part time gig then go back to your real job. We need more term limits not less. Leave it to a former corrupt politician to try and aid a current corrupt politician in undoing the will of the people (numerous times). The T&V does itself a disservice posting this dolt’s remarks week in and week out.

    • I completely agree with you. All of these politicians make a living off of being a politician, which is definitely not how it should work. If the term limits affect them in one position, they just run for a new one, and then a new one, and then a new one, until they are old.

      If Danny Boy wants to be a leader, he should leave politics behind and go back to law. It would be a trend that 95%+ of politicians really should follow.

  3. “To lose Dan Garodnick from public service now would have been like the Yankees having to cut Derek Jeter after only twelve years. Fortunately, Jeter stayed with the Yankees for 20 years and soon will be enshrined in the Baseball Hall of Fame. Some of his best years were in his last six or seven.”

    This is a super bogus comparison and a great insult to Derek Jeter. A better comparison would be if The Yankees could have dumped Alex Rodriguez rather can carry his dead weight for years.

    No single person has done more harm to PCVST (and the city in general) than Dan Dan the flimflam man. Just watch as Corruption Tower rises 100 stories above Grand Central to see why. Dan got paid off big on that one.

  4. You have got to be joking. Garodnick is an empty suit, a political shill constantly jockeying for media exposure to advance his career.

    Seriously, what has he ever done for us besides hold press conferences? During the last 11 years PCVST has become a carcass being picked over by Big Real Estate vultures, and the only response from his office has been empty promises. He has not delivered anything, but grinning press releases.

    • You are totally right. I think that this past election showed people the true side of politics, and politicians will be held more accountable for their actions or their inaction. Dan is guilty of both, his actions with large Real Estate, and his inaction in pcvst.

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