Thursday, September 2, 2010

Texas Governor has TOO MUCH power

Time to revamp the office and responsibilities

by Peter Stern

Yes, Texas gubernatorial candidate Bill White is correct. Limit the terms of the Governor. If you can't do the job in 2 terms you shouldn't remain Governor.

Along with limitations on the terms of Governor, we should take it a step further and include limitations on the terms of Senators and House Representatives. There are many more individuals to be concerned about than the omnipotent Governor, many who have accumulated great power and wealth while in office.

Then we should prohibit any former legislator from being hired by their wealthy special interest campaign contributors, otherwise, doesn't the hiring prove that there previously was "a conflict of interest" while the elected official was in office? [rhetorical question]

Furthermore, why do we taxpayers continue to provide significant lifetime retirement income and packages to former elected officials? Especially the part-timers in the Senate and House? We should do away with these as well.

Another issue is that of appointments made by the Governor. I don't think Texans realize how many appointments the Governor makes during his or her term.  There are too many!

Many of the appointments are for positions that the people, NOT the Governor, should determine, e.g., the Commission of the Texas Department of Insurance (TDI) and the Commissioner of the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) --- to name two.

Another dilemma is that the laws protect the incumbent Governor from a run-off in the primary. There should be a run-off if the incumbent gets less than 50 percent of the total votes.

For many years people were fond of saying that the position of Governor in Texas was one of the weakest positions in Government; however, Perry has proved that statement to be erroneous.

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