Ignoring the unfair advantages sitting Tucson City Councilmembers have due to their position, Steve Kozachik came out in opposition to term limits on Tuesday. In his City funded newsletter, Kozachik called term limits “undemocratic.”
He wrote, “As for Term Limits – we have them. They’re called elections. As with the Ward Only pro-posal, this idea is being floated as a way to ‘term out’ members of the M&C after two terms by people who haven’t been able to win at the ballot box. If it’s adopted at the ballot in November, it means I’m ineligible to run again in 2017. The same would be true of Richard. The next time around, none of the sitting council members or the Mayor would be allowed to run again.”
Kozachik claimed the push for term limits was part of an evil plan to “force a changing of the guard another way.”
Kozachik says that he hopes the 9th Circuit rules in the incumbents’ “favor on how we conduct our elections and that the Term Limits people aren’t able to buy enough signatures to make it to the ballot.”
For years, the Tucson Councilmembers have used the resorces of their offices to stay in office. The people of the 8th poorest metropolitan area in the country have had limited resources with which to wage viable challenges. However, in the last General Election, Republican candidates Margaret Burkholder, and Kelly Lawton prevailed in their wards, but lost the vote across the city. According to Republicans, the people in Ward 4 and Ward 2 voted against Paul Cunningham and Shirley Scott by a clear majority and the incumbents lost in their wards.
The establishment has thrived under the “hybrid” system in which the candidates are elected by ward in a partisan primary, and then during the general election voters across the city pick that ward’s council person.