Here's an excerpt from the transcript of his testimony before the City Council, in a hearing today, according to the release his staff sent us:
I support extending term limits, not because Michael Bloomberg wants to run for Mayor again, but because it begins to move us back toward responsible governance and representative democracy, which should continue to be the foundation of American democracy. As a matter of fact, the short term implication for me and others is that it throws new variables in our path. But I believe the elimination of term limits is more important than anyone’s short term interest, mine included.
Mr. Carrión plans to run for city comptroller in 2009.
"What’s at stake here is the primacy of the voter in communities here and around the country where electing who they’d like to support and for how long has been forcibly removed, and replaced with an artificial sense of power," he continued.
Earlier today, Riverdale resident Ann Noonan, president of the New York chapter of the Visual Artists Guild and an activist on international issues, like freedom of speech in China, sent us her testimony against changing term limits.
"I am sad that Councilmember Oliver Koppell, who is supposed to represent the Council district where I reside has championed an undemocratic process of ramming a bill through the City Council to change a law that we the voters voted for twice. Clearly Mr. Koppell does not respect the democratic process, and it is my fervent hope that he is never entrusted with public office again," she wrote.
Bronx resident Phil Foglia also e-mailed his remarks to the newspaper:
"Not once, but twice the people have spoken forcefully. We want term limits. The second referendum was more specific. No third term. This mandate by the people was not vague or ambiguous. No third term. If this legislation is enacted, unilaterally extending your terms, this Council will have hit a new low in government not seen since Plunkett of Tammany Hall."
And yesterday, Ari Hoffnung, who is gunning for Mr. Koppell's Council seat — the election, no matter who else is running, is in 2009 — sent us his comments.
He wants council members voting against the term-limits extension to pledge that if it's passed, they won't take advantage of the legislation and seek the third term they're advocating against.
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