Here’s Why Barack Obama Can’t Run for a Third Term

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President Barack Obama speaks at the Democratic National Convention on Wednesday night. (Getty)

At the Democratic National Convention, President Barack Obama effectively gave his farewell address, with only a few months left in his second term. Despite his popularity in recent polls of his job performance, Obama cannot run for a third term thanks to the 22nd Amendment to the Constitution.


Franklin D. Roosevelt Was the Only President to Win More Than Two Terms

Franklin D. Roosevelt, FDR, president with three terms

Franklin D. Roosevelt. (Getty)

Ratified in 1951 after President Franklin D. Roosevelt was elected to four terms during the Great Depression and World War II, the amendment made a tradition law of the land. The first president, George Washington, decided not to run for a third term and since then, presidents stuck to just two terms. There had been some attempts by other presidents before Roosevelt to run for a third term, but none were successful. The last president to be eligible for seeking a third term was Harry S. Truman, since the amendment was ratified after he was first elected.

There have been attempts to repeal the amendment, but they haven’t been successful. Rep. Jose Serrano of New York introduced a bill to repeal it in January 2013. While presidents are term-limited, both House and Senate members are not. Supreme Court justices also serve until their death or retirement.


Obama Has Positive Job Approval Ratings

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Obama after his DNC speech. (Getty)

The most Gallup Poll on Obama’s approval rating showed 51 percent of the 1,500 adults polled approve of his job performance as of July 24. The latest Rasmussen poll shows Obama with a 50 percent approval rating.

Meanwhile, Hillary Clinton‘s standings in the polls against Donald Trump slid a bit after the Republican National Convention. A CBS News poll released on July 25 showed that only 29 percent of voters view her as honest and trustworthy. The poll found that 36 percent of Democrats even viewed her as not honest and trustworthy.


If Clinton Won, It’d Only Be the Second Time a Party Has Won Three Consecutive Terms Since 22nd Amendment was Enacted

George HW Bush, George Bush, first George Bush

Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush were the only presidents from the same party to be elected consecutively after the 22nd Amendment was enacted. (Getty)

If Clinton did win in November, it would only be the second time since the 22nd Amendment was ratified that a single party held the Oval Office for three consecutive terms. The only other time it happened came when George H.W. Bush won after Ronald Reagan’s second term.

However, Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta said that Clinton isn’t running for Obama’s third term, reports The Hill. “She has a new set of ideas,” Podesta said.