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Boston City Council Nixes Term Limits

In its last meeting of the year Wednesday, the Boston City Council voted seven-to-six against establishing mayoral term limits.

Councilor Sam Yoon introduced the measure after he lost in a primary election to Mayor Thomas Menino, who was reelected in November to a record fifth term.

The proposal was also supported by Councilor Michael Flaherty, Menino's opponent in the general election.

The council also voted down a measure that would have imposed limits on the terms of councilors.

Councilor John Connolly said he supported the proposals because they would encourage more women and minorities to run for city office. "People don't run because the power of incumbency. The power of money and the power of special interests skews our political process. And that's why we should support terms limits," he said.

Opponents of the measures said they would limit choice for voters.

"What this does is artificially restrict choice on the part of future voters. And I don't think that's fair to the future voters," Councilor Charles Yancey said.

Also on its last day of business, the council approved a ban on texting while driving. The petition now goes to the mayor, and must also be approved by the state legislature.

This program aired on December 16, 2009. The audio for this program is not available.

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