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Leaders Update


March 29, 2012

TODAY: March 29, 1961 – The 23rd Amendment to the U.S. Constitution is ratified, allowing residents of Washington, DC, to vote for president

PRESIDENT’S CORNER

  • President’s Message: Money in Politics and Board Action (NEW)
  • League Position on the Federal Role in Public Education (NEW)
  • Protect Our Family Name and Logo (NEW)
  • LWVUS UN Observers: Annual Report 2011-2012 Available Online (NEW)

CONVENTION

  • How Many Delegates Can Your League Send to Convention? (NEW)
  • Shhh...Did You Know there is a Crime Museum in DC? (NEW)

ADVOCACY

  • League Statement on 2012 DISCLOSE Act (NEW)
  • League Praises New EPA Carbon Rule (NEW)

EDUCATION FUND (Redistricting; Elections; Global Democracy)

  • Redistricting: LWVEF Releases Redistricting Report (NEW)
  • Elections: VOTE411 – New Webinars Available (NEW)
  • Elections: Infographic Shows Impact of Voter Suppression Laws (NEW)
  • Elections: LWVSC and LWVTX Ask Court Permission to Intervene in Photo ID Lawsuit (NEW)
  • Global Democracy: Conference on Women and the Rule of Law in the Americas (NEW)

MEMBERSHIP & LEADERSHIP

  • Coach in the Spotlight: The North Carolina Coaching Team! (NEW)
  • Leadership Changes? Update Your League Officers in the Database
  • Honor Your 50-Year Members at Your Annual Meeting!

OTHER

  • PADFOLIOS – Excellent Gifts for Speakers
  • Leaving a Legacy

 

PRESIDENT’S CORNER

Dear League Leader:

Whether it’s Stand Your Ground laws, anti-immigration legislation or voter ID, the role of special interest money in government at all levels is becoming more and more pervasive. However connecting the dots of influence peddling is not easy. The average voters cast their ballots amidst a barrage of negative, misleading and even false campaign ads paid for by innocuous sounding groups that obscure the true sources of their funding. The Center for Public Integrity recently published a report rating state legislation regarding ethics in government and transparency. The picture is not pretty.

At the Federal level, this election season has seen a new low in messaging and a new high in spending by so-called independent groups. Following Citizens United, one of the remaining avenues of reform is disclosure of the sources of that spending. While the Supreme Court was hearing oral argument in suits challenging the Affordable Care Act, the Senate is hearing testimony on the DISCLOSE Act. The League supports this Act, as do an overwhelming number of voters. Corporations, unions and individuals who spend money in elections must be required to stand by their ads and allow voters to know who is trying to influence their vote.

The League is taking a strong stand on money in politics. Support for DISCLOSE, petitioning the White House for a response on the FEC and demanding elected officials let the sun shine in at all levels of government is a good start. The LWVUS Board created a Campaign Finance Task Force. As expected, we found great talent and expertise among our members. The resulting task force has a lot to do and the skills to do it.

Campaign finance was not the only focus of the Board meeting last week. The Board approved a new position as well as the first proposed biennial budget and recommended program. The position on the Federal Role in Public Education is included in this update. Remaining recommendations to Convention will be posted in upcoming weeks.

In League,

Elisabeth

League Position on the Federal Role in Public Education (NEW)
The LWVUS now has a position on the Federal Role in Public Education! The LWVUS Board approved a new Education position at its March 2012 meeting. The position is based on responses received from the 377 Leagues across the country that participated in the Education Study. The position states that “the League of Women Voters believes that the federal government shares with other levels of government the responsibility to provide an equitable, quality public education for all children pre-K through grade 12. A quality public education is essential for a strong, viable and sustainable democratic society and is a civil right.” Thanks to the many local and state Leagues and ILOs that held meetings, involved their communities, and worked to reach consensus on this critical issue of importance to all Americans. Committee Chairs Peggy Hill (TX) and Joanne Leavitt (CA) and their Committee: Pat Aaron ( IL), Carolyn Jefferson-Jenkins (CO), Patricia Libutti (NJ), Sanford Ostroy (MA), Jean Pierce (IL) and Janelle Rivers (SC) are to be commended for their excellent work and leadership.

Protect Our Family Name and Logo (NEW)
In January, the Board adopted a League Logo Policy stating that all Leagues should use our family identity (our name and logo with no adjustments) and follow the guidelines for use of the standard logo and the new online logo. To read about and download the protected League logos, go to www.lwv.org and click “login” in the top red bar. You need to login as a member (not a League) to access the logos. If you haven’t registered and received a temporary password, you will need to do this first in order to login. After you login, in order to get to the Logo page, first go to “Member,” then “League Essentials,” then “Policies, Bylaws and Guidelines,” then “League Logo Graphic Files and Usage Policy.” Please read the descriptive text. If the description mentions logging in, please wait 30 seconds and then refresh the page to trigger recognition of your login “cookie” by the system. We appreciate your patience as we have been working with technical support on some issues related to access to this content. If you do have login problems, please report them to Gretchen Knell (gknell@lwv.org) and include:  your name, email address used to login to the website, date and approximate time you tried to access the logo information, and the Internet browser (Internet Explorer, Firefox, Safari, etc.) and browser version you are using.

LWVUS UN Observers: Annual Report 2011-2012 Available Online (NEW)

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CONVENTION

How Many Delegates Can Your League Send to Convention? (NEW)
Are you confused about how many delegates your League can send to the national Convention this year? There’s a simple formula: (1-99 members) = 1 delegate, (100-199 members) = 2 delegates, (200-299 members) = 3 delegates, etc. Go to the LWVUS website to read more. We’ve heard that many Leagues are sending their full delegation and look forward to seeing you in June! Please remember: Your League’s PMP must be paid in full in order for your delegates to vote at Convention.

Shhh...Did You Know there is a Crime Museum in DC? (NEW)
Described by Good Morning America as a “must see for CSI fans,” the Crime Museum includes a crime lab and the filming studios for America's Most Wanted. The Crime Museum is easily accessible via the metro and offers a simulated shooting range, high-speed police-chase, and hundreds of interactive exhibits and artifacts pertaining to one of America's favorite subjects.

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ADVOCACY

League Statement on 2012 DISCLOSE Act (NEW)
The League had this statement from President MacNamara entered into the record for the Senate Rules Committee hearing today on the DISCLOSE Act of 2012. We also blogged on DISCLOSE; be sure you are subscribed for our RSS feed here.

League Praises New EPA Carbon Rule (NEW)
LWVUS President Elisabeth MacNamara issued this statement regarding the Obama Administration's new rules regulating carbon emissions for future power plants. This rule ensures that there is a uniform national limit on the amount of carbon emissions from new power plants and is in line with steps that states across the United States and industry officials are already working to implement.

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EDUCATION FUND (Redistricting; Elections; Global Democracy)

Redistricting: LWVEF Releases Redistricting Report (NEW)
LWVEF is pleased to release Shining a Light: Redistricting Lessons Learned in 2011. This comprehensive whitepaper highlights the groundbreaking efforts of Leagues and other advocates to promote a more fair and transparent redistricting process, and sheds light on key reform opportunities for improving the process over the next decade. The report also includes helpful practices for local Leagues to consider as they work to influence redistricting at the local level. Thank you to state League leaders who provided input for this publication! We will be sharing it with a wide array of partners and interested organizations in the coming weeks and encourage you to do the same.

Elections: VOTE411 – New Webinars Available (NEW)
Good news: Two new webinars for VOTE411’s Voters’ Guide Software are now available. The Voters’ Guide Software allows state and local Leagues to gather and publish candidate information with ease, consistency and visibility. These webinars provide helpful information and training for Leagues currently using the software and for Leagues interested in learning more about this effective tool. The most recent webinars are: Alternate Language and Mail Merge. These webinars, along with the Basic Training, Spreadsheet Upload and GIS Data webinars, can be found at the bottom of this page. For more information about these webinars or if you have any questions about VOTE411 and how you can get involved, contact Megan Brown (mbrown@lwv.org).

Elections: Infographic Shows Impact of Voter Suppression Laws (NEW)
Today, Craigslist founder Craig Newmark published an infographic, illustrating the impact of U.S. voting restriction laws, on his craigconnects website. The infographic explores the extensive state actions to limit opportunities for Americans to vote. It provides an overview of the flood of voter suppression laws that the League has been fighting and the negative impact that those laws could have on millions of citizens. LWVUS provided information and feedback to Newmark.

Elections: LWVSC and LWVTX Ask Court Permission to Intervene in Photo ID Lawsuit (NEW)
The League is now actively engaged in lawsuits to halt voter suppression laws in four states: FL, SC, TX and WI. This past week both LWVSC and LWVTX filed papers to intervene in their respective photo ID cases before a three judge panel in Washington, DC, where the states of SC and TX are appealing the U.S. Department of Justice’s denial of preclearance. The State of Texas is also challenging the constitutionality of section 5 of the Voting Rights Act (the preclearance section). However, the court has decided it will only address that issue if it denies preclearance of the law. Read press releases: LWVSC and LWVTX. Stay informed throughout the week: For more voter suppression updates from across the country, check the LWV website.

Global Democracy: Conference on Women and the Rule of Law in the Americas (NEW)
The LWV and the Inter-American Dialogue are organizing an event, “Women and the Rule of Law: A View from the Americas,” scheduled for September 2012. Learn more here.

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MEMBERSHIP AND LEADERSHIP

Coach in the Spotlight: The North Carolina Coaching Team! (NEW)
For two years, the North Carolina coaching team (Peg Chapin, Maxine Eaves, and Lee Luebbe) has been mentoring and guiding local Leagues in the state as part of the Membership Leadership Development (MLD) program. According to their Ruth S. Shur Fellow, Georgia DeGregorio, this team “is persistent, consistent, and inventive. They support each other, and each coach has unique characteristics which enlarge their impact. As a team, they see the big picture of what MLD can look like in NC and have a positive vision of the future.” Cheers to our coaches working in the field in North Carolina and our over 100 state coaches building the League nationwide from the ground up!

Leadership Changes? Update Your League Officers in the Database
If your League has a change in leadership, don’t forget to update your League’s officers’ information in the LWVUS database. If you have any questions or need help, contact Betty Taira.

Honor Your 50-Year Members at Your Annual Meeting!
Your annual meeting is a great time to pay tribute to your League’s dedicated 50-year members.  Want a certificate to present to them? Contact Betty Taira at Membership@lwv.org with their names, your League information and the date by which you need the certificates. Please request certificates at least 2 weeks in advance of your meeting. Check out LWVUS tips for a successful annual meeting here.

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OTHER

PADFOLIOS – Excellent Gifts for Speakers
Find them here at the online store for just $6.00 during the month of April.

Leaving a Legacy
Including the League of Women Voters Education Fund in your will is among the easiest ways to offer support of the LWVEF's work for years to come. We suggest the following language to include the League as a beneficiary of a will or trust: " I give, devise, and bequeath to the League of Women Voters Education Fund, a charitable organization formed in the District of Columbia, with offices at 1730 M Street, NW, Washington, DC, 20036, {the sum of $___ } {___ percentage of my residuary estate}." If you already have a will, you can have your attorney add a codicil to include the LWVEF. After you've added the League, please contact the Development office by email so we can list you as a member of our Carrie Chapman Catt Legacy Society.

Like" the League on Facebook at www.facebook.com/leagueofwomenvoters and connect with us on Twitter.
Donate to the League and support our work.

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