Most Americans Reject Lifting Term Limits for Presidents

Likely voters in the United States are more supportive of reforms that would reduce the tenures of Members of Congress.

Vancouver, BC [September 23, 2020] – The notion of allowing the President of the United States to serve more than two terms in office is not attractive to a large proportion of American likely voters, a new Research Co. poll has found.

In the online survey of a representative national sample of likely voters, only 6% of respondents are willing to lift term litis to allow American presidents to serve as many four-year terms as they want.

While one-in-four likely voters (26%) would prefer to limit the head of state to a single four-year term, almost two thirds (65%) would keep the current regulations that allow presidents to serve for two four-year terms,

“Support for completely abolishing term limits at the White House has dropped from 12% in a survey conducted in May 2013, four months after Barack Obama was sworn in for his final term, to 6% this year,” says Mario Canseco, President of Research Co. “A majority of likely voters in all regions believe the current guidelines should remain in place.”

Just over a third of likely voters (35%) would limit U.S. Senators to one six-year term, while a similar proportion (34%) would prefer to limit members of the upper house to two six-year terms.

While 9% of likely voters would endorse an 18-year tenure for U.S. Senators (three six-year terms), 16% would keep the current regulations that allow members of the upper house to serve as many terms as they want.

Half of likely voters in the United States (50%) are willing to limit members of the House of Representatives to six-year tenures (three two-year terms), while about one-in-five (21%) would prefer to allow members of the lower house to serve for up to 12 years.

Just under one-in-five likely voters (18%) would continue to allow members of the House of Representatives to serve as many terms as they want.

Results are based on an online study conducted from September 4 to September 6, 2020, among 1,200 American adults.  The data has been statistically weighted according to U.S. census figures for age, gender and region. The margin of error—which measures sample variability—is +/- 2.8 percentage points, nineteen times out of twenty.

Find our data tables here and here and download the press release here. 

For more information on this poll, please contact:

Mario Canseco, President, Research Co.