Rare Video: Young Mitch McConnell Knocks Term Limits, Defends Lobbyists


by Nick Tomboulides

Click here to sign the pledge to term limit Mitch McConnell


Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) has been in office for 29 years. He has been named one of the “Most Corrupt” members of Congress four times by the Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, including in 2013. McConnell has already raised $20 million for his re-election campaign this year, including massive donations from Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan Chase, Citigroup and other special interests.

It’s no wonder that McConnell doesn’t like term limits. In this rare footage from 1987, McConnell as a freshman Senator states that he opposes term limits because, “the longer you’re in, the more you know. My experience in the Senate has been, that you get better with experience.”

Our research shows that simply isn’t true. As a legislator gets more time in office, his knowledge does increase. But that knowledge is not of how to govern well, but of how to manipulate the system using special interest money.

In this next video, young McConnell defends lobbyists, stating that they’re “a useful part of the process, provided that you use them as information sources and don’t allow them to have special influence with you.”


Our question to Senator McConnell is: When Citigroup gave you $89,000, was this so that they could function as an information source?

These videos are 27 years old, but McConnell has changed very little. His records show an uncomfortably close relationship with special interests, and he has not once used high rank in the Senate to promote term limits, a reform supported by 75 percent of the American people.

This year, there’s a chance that Kentucky voters impose a term limit of their own on McConnell. He is facing a tough challenge in the GOP Primary from U.S. Term Limits pledge signer Matt Bevin, and in the general election from Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes.

Nick Tomboulides is the Executive Director of U.S. Term Limits

About Nick Tomboulides