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All Mo. statewide officeholders would be term limited under proposal

(Marshall Griffin/St. Louis Public Radio)
Mo. Capitol

All statewide officeholders in Missouri would be limited to eight years in office, under legislation pre-filed in the State Senate.

The Governor and State Treasurer are the only statewide office holders in Missouri limited to two four-year terms.  The rest – Lt. GovernorAttorney GeneralSecretary of State and State Auditor – can run for re-election as often as they want.  The measure is sponsored by State Senator Brad Lager (R, Savannah), who is also running for Lt. Governor.

“The longer someone is there, the more entrenched they become in government, and really the special interests and the bureaucracy begins to take them over," Lager said.  "I believe that fresh blood, fresh energy in office is the right thing to do.”

Before being elected Governor, Jay Nixon (D) spent 16 years as Missouri's Attorney General, and ran for other offices, including the U.S. Senate, during his time in that office.

“As career politicians sit in these seats for longer than eight years, all of a sudden they start thinking that it’s their seat, that they can go run for something else and then come back to this for safe haven," Lager said.

Lager also says his legislation is not meant as a swipe against fellow Republican Peter Kinder, who’s seeking a third term as Lt. Governor.  Kinder’s campaign has not responded to requests for a comment.

If the resolution passes the Missouri House and Senate next year, it would go before voters in November.

Marshal was a political reporter for St. Louis Public Radio until 2018.

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