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Are Michigan's term limits too strict? Senate majority leader thinks so

Senate Majority Leader Mike Shirkey

The leader of the state Senate says he wants to enact changes to Michigan’s term limits amendment.

Michigan Senate Majority Leader Mike Shirkey (R-Clarklake) says he’s looking for ways to extend or repeal term limits for elected officials. Michigan has some of the strictest term limits in the country, and Shirkey says that means too much inexperience in the legislative branch.

Shirkey surprised a group at the Mackinac Policy Conference when he announced he wants to expand or scrap term limits for state legislators and the governor.

“Term limits are a problem in Michigan, and I’m planning on thinking about this and processing it until I come up with a suggestion or a solution," he said. "I don’t have a solution right now. I just know it’s a problem.”

Michigan voters adopted one of the nation’s strictest term limits amendments in 1992.

Voters would have to approve any changes to the amendment. It could be put on the ballot by super-majority votes in the House and the Senate, or it could be done with a petition drive.

Rick Pluta is Senior Capitol Correspondent for the Michigan Public Radio Network. He has been covering Michigan’s Capitol, government, and politics since 1987.
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