Gallup: 75% Would Vote 'For' Term Limits on Congress

By Michael W. Chapman | January 18, 2013 | 11:24 AM EST

The Capitol Dome on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)

( – A new poll shows that 75 percent of U.S. adults, if given the opportunity, would vote for term limits for members of the House of Representatives and the Senate.

In the poll, conducted by Gallup, 1,013 adults, age 18 and older, from all 50 states were asked, “Suppose that on Election Day you could vote on key issues as well as candidates. Would you vote for or against a law that would limit the number of terms which members of Congress and the U.S. Senate can serve?

The survey showed that 75 percent would vote “for” term limits; 21 percent would vote “against” term limits; and 5 percent had no opinion.

The political breakdown of those in favor of terms limits was 82 percent Republican, 79 percent Independents, and 65 percent Democrats.

In the age categories, they were all close, varying only between 73 percent and 77 percent.

“Republicans and Independents are slightly more likely than Democrats to favor term limits,” reported Gallup. “Nevertheless, the vast majority of all party groups agree on the issue. Further, Gallup finds no generational differences in support of the proposal.”

In the 2012 elections, discounting the members who retired, the reelection rate in the House of Representatives was 91 percent: 358 of 393 incumbents were reelected. In the Senate, the reelection rate was also 91 percent, with 21 of 23 incumbents winning reelection.

Earlier polls by Gallup, back in 1994 and 1996, showed that between two-thirds and three-quarters of Americans “said they would vote for a constitutional amendment to limit the number of terms that members of Congress and the U.S. Senate can serve,” said the polling group.

The latest survey was done by telephone, Jan. 8-9, 2013.

Michael W. Chapman
Michael W. Chapman
Michael W. Chapman