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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Beruff supports term limits but draws ire from pro-limit group

Term limit pledge from U.S. Term Limits

U.S. Term Limits

Term limit pledge from U.S. Term Limits

Republican U.S. Senate candidate Carlos Beruff has already said he would only serve a maximum of two 6-year terms if he were to win the seat this year. But that is not good enough for a national group advocating term limits for members of Congress.

U.S. Term Limits officials confronted Beruff at a speech in Brevard County on Wednesday night and asked him to sign their pledge to co-sponsor and vote for a bill to bar Senators from serving more than two 6-year terms and House member from serving more than three 2-year terms.

Beruff refused. He told U.S. Term Limits executive director Nick Tomboulides that he supports the Senate limits, but thinks House members should get at least 10 years.

“I don’t think six years is quite enough,” Beruff said.

Tomboulides responded saying founding fathers like Benjamin Franklin proposed 3 years. But Beruff didn’t budge. That had Tomboulides on Thursday sending out a blast email to the group’s supporters declaring that Beruff “punts on term limits pledge.”

“I twice asked Beruff to sign the U.S. Term Limits Pledge,” Tomboulides writes in the email. “He refused.”

Beruff isn’t the only one getting dinged by U.S. Term Limits. In April, the group sent out a similar blast email going after another Republican Todd Wilcox for not signing the pledge, Tomboulides said in an interview on Friday. Like Beruff, Wilcox, an Orlando area Republican, said if elected, he’d only serve two terms but did not sign the pledge. In April, Wilcox issues a written response to Tomboulides saying: “I don't need to sign a pledge to live up to my word. In fact, I am not signing any pledges.”

Tomboulides said he’s going to confront all of the candidates in the race to replace U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, who did sign the pledge when he was running. If other candidate’s refuse, they too will get similar emails sent out about their refusal to sign. So far Florida Lt. Gov. Carlos Lopez-Cantera and U.S. Rep. Ron DeSantis, R-Ponte Vedra Beach, are the only candidates in the Senate race to sign the pledge. U.S. Rep. David Jolly, R-Indian Shores, has refused to sign the pledge in previous campaigns for the U.S. House, but Tomboulides said he will eventually confront him again. Neither of the two Democrats - Alan Grayson or Patrick Murphy - have signed the pledge either.

The DeSantis campaign was quick to jump on the issue and point out that they did sign the pledge.

“Ron DeSantis has fought for term limits in Congress and signed this same pledge that Beruff is now refusing” said Brad Herold, campaign manager for DeSantis. “Florida deserves someone who won't just talk during a campaign but who has a demonstrated record of fighting to clean up Washington.”

[Last modified: Friday, May 13, 2016 5:36pm]


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