Thursday, October 23, 2008 - 'Aye' And Mighty: Bloomberg's Wish Is Granted:

Mayor Michael Bloomberg's bid to run for a third term got the all-clear Thursday when the City Council voted to allow term limits to be extended from 8 to 12 years.

Emotional and often outspoken council members voted 29-22 in favor of the extension that now allows officeholders three consecutive four-year terms. About two-thirds of the City Council is currently in their second term.

The council debate began around 2:30 with passionate views on both sides. Council Speaker Christine Quinn got the debate rolling, echoing Bloomberg's argument that the Wall Street meltdown needed experienced hands like himself and the other elected officials.

"In challenging times like this, the voters should have the choice of keeping the current leadership, the current mayor, the current City Council," she said.

But opponents argued the decision should be up to the people, not the officials who would also be affected by a term limit extension.

"If you do this, you are undermining the very people who voted for you," Councilman Charles Barron argued. "Even though the mayor will win today, he is the big loser, because he lost democracy, he lost the favor of the people."

11:06 PM