Public: Government
Single term politicians   (+1, -3)  [vote for, against]
make politicians govern rather than campaign

One of the big problems in politics is politicians spend more time, energy and tax-payer money trying to get re-elected rather than actually doing their job. In fact, it has got to the stage where many politicians believe that getting re-elected is their job - after all, these politicians would say, an election result is a good measure of success.

Their are many negative consequences of politicians spending their time trying to get re-elected: pork-barreling, disproportionate spending on vocal minorities, over-reacting to media hysteria, etc.

Unfortunately it would be impossible to instruct politicians to not focus on their re-election.

Instead I suggest politicians only be able to serve a single term. The term of office might need to be extended to allow time for politicians to implement their policies (for example 3 year terms would be extended to 4 year terms). Also, a staggered timing of elections might be necessary to allow for continuity of goverance (i.e. only half the politicians would go up for replacement at each election).

Many of the existing and suggested systems of keeping politicians honest would be need to be implemented and strengthened; e.g. campaign finance reforms, transparency and minimisation of conflicts of interest, monitoring tax-payer funded travel and expenses, etc.
-- xaviergisz, May 14 2009

"let's all"?
-- neelandan, May 14 2009

The term limits that I'm aware of span multiple terms (e.g. US president, two terms).
-- xaviergisz, May 14 2009

The problem is that in as much as terms are limited the party replaces the politician. The pressure which otherwise would have been on the politician to seek his own re-election becomes pressure for the politician to create favourable conditions for the re-election of his party. This makes the party an even more powerful entity; and the conviction or values-driven politician even weaker.

In reform of the political system the direction must be towards ensuring that politicians are able to govern in accordance to their heartfelt values and God-given wisdom rather than having to listen to donors, pressure groups, party members or in fact anyone but the people and their Creator.
-- vincevincevince, May 14 2009

You make a good point about the party replacing the politician vince, I hadn't considered it from that angle. However I think this problem could be overcome by making the election about the individual rather than the party. For example, making the candidates names unordered/randomised on the ballot paper, so voters would have to seek out the name of the politician they wanted to vote for rather than the party.
-- xaviergisz, May 14 2009

Baked. Ambitious politicians throughout history have ended the necessity of wasting time on elections by installing themselves in power for a single, lifelong term (a measurement of variable and, on occasion, gratifyingly short duration).
-- DrBob, May 14 2009

//Their are many negative consequences of politicians spending their time trying to get re-elected//

You are neglecting a major positive consequence. One way of getting re-elected is to do a good job.

Also Marked For Deletion - widely known to exist.
-- Bad Jim, May 14 2009

random, halfbakery