Hoaxes & Rumors

Obama Third Term Rumors

Obama Third Term Rumors

A story circulating online claims that President Obama will be seeking a third presidential term.

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The story is false.

The current incarnation of this rumor was published by the satirical website National Report. This fake story states that President Obama is hoping to have the 22nd Amendment – which places term limits on presidents – repealed to clear the way for a 2016 presidential run.

There have been other satirical and conspiracy articles which also assert a third term bid for the president.

About National Report

National Report publishes outlandish articles in the name of satire. It has occasionally published a disclaimer which describes the website as “a news and political satire web publication.”

Many of the articles published by National Report have received attention and prompted heated debate among readers fooled into believing the story in question.

22nd Amendment

The 22nd amendment sets a term limit for the President of the United States. It was passed by Congress in 1947 and ratified in 1951.

There have many attempts over the years to abolish the 22nd Amendment, including a series of bills introduced in recent years by Rep. José Serrano of New York.

A similar rumor about a supposed third term run by President Obama circulated back in early 2013. That rumor was also fueled by proposals by Serrano.

AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais

AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais

A new Constitutional Amendment must be ratified in order to repeal a previous amendment. An amendment first must be proposed by either by two-thirds of both houses of Congress, or two-thirds of state legislatures. After the proposal, the amendment must be ratified by three-fourths of the states (by one of two methods). Aside from Serrano’s lone attempts, there are no serious efforts currently in place to repeal the 22nd Amendment.

Bottom Line

President Obama has not announced that he will seek a third term. Attempts at abolishing the 22nd Amendment are introduced almost every year and have virtually no chance of becoming reality in the foreseeable future. Satirical stories about a possible Obama third term are based in part on Rep. Serrano’s continuous – and futile – attempts to remove Presidential term limits.

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