LaRue is former deputy director of the Eisenhower Institute and of the American Society of International Law. This piece is adapted from his article for a forthcoming issue of the University of Idaho Law Review.
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LaRue is former deputy director of the Eisenhower Institute, a nonpartisan think tank at Gettysburg College, and of the American Society of International Law. He adapted this piece from an article he wrote in 2018 for the Election law Journal.
Getting reelected is becoming too easy for our presidents. Nine of the last 12 incumbents who sought a second term, including four of the last five, succeeded. A re-elected President Trump would make it four in a row.
The structure of maximum presidential service — eight years in two equal terms — strengthens this probability. Every incumbent has an advantage in pursuing reelection. And reelection itself is not a bad thing. But its timing at four years has become so unfair that I call it the "four-year crutch."
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