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League of Women Voters

The League Update

 

NOVEMBER 13, 2014

Dear Friend,

This past Tuesday, we celebrated Veterans Day, the origins of which date to the Armistice on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918 and the end of the war to end all wars. World War I erupted 100 years ago in the summer of 1914. There is an interesting link between the Great War and the fight for women’s suffrage. Carrie Chapman Catt devoted her life to the cause of women’s suffrage among other reasons because she believed that giving women the vote would bring an end to war.

When Catt assumed the presidency of the National American Woman Suffrage Association (NAWSA) in 1915, she made two crucial strategic decisions. First, she persuaded NAWSA to focus its efforts on an amendment to the United States Constitution; second, she took the suffrage movement to war. “War work” in the lead up to the United States entry into the European conflict gave the movement credibility and demonstrated that women were capable of making hard choices. According to biographers, Catt chose to support the war effort and link the service of the NASWA to women's work in war in order to create the public perception that the suffrage movement was patriotic and that women were hard workers for the country during the time of war.

One hundred and fifty years ago, Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton made that same argument in the aftermath of the Civil War. Women had played a vital role in that conflict, both on the frontlines and on the home front. Anthony and Stanton argued that the nation should honor the work and sacrifice of its women by including women’s suffrage and equality in the Fourteenth Amendment. While the President, Congress and even former allies in the abolition movement rejected that plea, in 1918, Woodrow Wilson did not, and he threw his support behind the Susan B. Anthony Amendment. The 19th Amendment finally passed both chambers and was submitted to the states for ratification while the Great War still raged overseas.

Veterans Day is a celebration of those who fight and have fought for our freedom. In commemorating those who served in uniform, let us not, in the words of Abigail Adams, forget the ladies who fought for freedom in so many less conspicuous, but important ways.

In League,

signature

 

League Leaders

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IN THIS ISSUE:

EDUCATION FUND - ELECTIONS

  • Free Materials if you Complete Our Election Season Activities Survey (REMINDER)

EDUCATION FUND - KEY STRUCTURES OF DEMOCRACY

  • LWV Money in Politics Committee Announced (NEW)
  • LWV Constitutional Amendment Committee Announced (NEW)

ADVOCACY

  • Last Chance for Action on EPA Clean Power! (NEW)

MEMBERSHIP & LEADERSHIP

  • There is so Much to Celebrate! (NEW)
  • Let Individuals Give the Gift of League this Holiday Season (NEW)
  • Win Free Convention Registration (NEW)
  • Roster Challenge #2! (NEW)

OTHER

  • The League Store Has Grown! (NEW)

EDUCATION FUND - ELECTIONS

Free Materials if you Complete Our Election Season Activities Survey (REMINDER)
Please take a few minutes to fill out our Election 2014 Voter Services Activities Survey and tell us what your League did to engage voters this year. Your answers will help inform our future trainings, materials and resources for Leagues and grant programs, enable us to better highlight Leagues’ work from across the nation, and allow us have more productive conversations with potential partners to benefit all levels of the League. Your feedback is important to us! Any League completing the survey before December 19 will be offered *FREE* VOTE411.org sports bags as part of our thanks for filling it out.

EDUCATION FUND - KEY STRUCTURES OF DEMOCRACY

These two new committees and the already-established LWVUS Redistricting Task Force will work on the convention-passed League program for the biennium:

LWV Money in Politics Committee Announced (NEW)
The 2014-2016 League Program on Key Structures of Democracy includes a review and update of the LWVUS campaign finance position. The Committee includes Barbara Zia, Chair (LWVUS Board), Jeanne Brown (CA), Amy Fitzgerald (TN), Xandra Kayden (CA), Jeanne Logsdon (NM), Corlette Moore McCoy (MA), Susan Murnane (OH), George Schuhmann (KY), Lonni Skrentner, (MN), and Launa Zimmaro (MA). LWVUS Board member Peggy Appler and Senior Lobbyist Betsy Lawson will provide support to the committee. The Committee will provide educational materials and activities to inform members and citizenry about complex issues around money in politics. The Committee will conduct an update of the League’s position on campaign finance for the purpose of addressing the lack of member understanding and agreement as to whether financing a political campaign is protected speech under the First Amendment. The campaign finance position will be updated through a study and consensus process to consider: (1) the rights of individuals and organizations, under the First Amendment, to express their political views through independent expenditures and the finance of election campaign activities; and (2) how those rights, if any, should be protected and reconciled with the interests set out in the current position.

LWV Constitutional Amendment Committee Announced (NEW)
The 2014-2016 League Program on Key Structures of Democracy includes a study the process of amending the U.S. Constitution. Committee members of the new Constitutional Amendment Committee include Patricia Donath, Chair (LWVUS Board), Linda Powers Bilanchone (SC), Shamira Gelbman (IN), Ann Luther (ME), Monica Marquez (CA) and Ann Mostoller (TN). LWVUS Board member Anne Schink and Sr. Director of Advocacy Lloyd Leonard will provide support to the committee. The committee will study the process by which the U.S. Constitution can be amended, including the constitutional convention method, and identifying the gaps and challenges in those methods.

ADVOCACY

Last Chance for Action on EPA Clean Power! (NEW)
The deadline to comment on the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) proposed regulation to cut carbon pollution from existing power plants is Monday, December 1. The proposal puts the U.S. at the forefront of the fight against climate change, but the EPA needs your input in order to finalize this groundbreaking proposal. Join the League in supporting the Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Power Plan—send a comment to the EPA by the December 1 deadline!

GLAD YOU ASKED!

If you have a question for this area, please submit it to kmcfarland@lwv.org.

How can Leagues help LWVUS highlight the vital impact of our voters’ service and elections work?

The Fill out the Election 2014 Voter Services Activities Survey and tell us what your League did to engage voters this year! Your feedback will help inform our future trainings, materials and resources for Leagues and grant programs and enable us to better highlight Leagues’ work from across the nation. By compiling information from state and local Leagues, we are able to have more productive conversations with potential partners to benefit all levels of the League. Your feedback is important to us! Any League completing the survey before December 19 will be offered *FREE* VOTE411.org sports bags as part of our thanks for filling it out.

MEMBERSHIP & LEADERSHIP

There is So Much to Celebrate! (NEW)
With the election season behind us and the holiday season just beginning, Leagues have a lot to celebrate this time of year. It is important for us to make time for fun activities where League members can come together, enjoy each other’s company and celebrate all of the hard work everyone has been doing. Sometimes it is good to plan an event where there is no work agenda and just enjoy the company of other League members. Not only do these activities serve as a great way to unwind after a hectic election season, they also allow new and prospective members time to interact with League members in a low stress situation. Read the December 2014 “Monthly Guidance for tips and suggestions. This is one of the monthly training tipsheets provided through the Membership and Leadership Development program (MLD) and supported by the Fund for Local League Growth.

Let Individuals Give the Gift of League this Holiday Season (NEW)
Looking for the perfect gift this holiday season or do you want to offer friends of the League a great way to honor someone they care about? Encourage individuals to give the gift of strengthening democracy by donating to League. You can find lots of great ideas for participating in #GivingTuesday on their website as well as some League specific tools and templates on the Member Resources website. Leagues should take advantage of this national nonprofit opportunity to encourage individuals to make a donation to League this holiday season. Upload this card template to your League’s site and allow donors to immediately print out a card that they can give to the recipient of the gift. This will allow individuals to give throughout the holiday season. (Leagues are encouraged to thank and acknowledge donors through their regular mechanisms for all donations to the organization.)

Win Free Convention Registration! (NEW)
Saturday, January 31, is the deadline for Leagues to update their member roster for FY2014-15. Summary sheets (the online document that shows your League’s official membership count) are now LIVE. Any changes that you make to your members’ records will be reflected on that page. Tips on renewing members, including a renewal letter template, are available here. As a way of saying thank you for all the hard work that Leagues do, we will be giving away five FREE registrations to National Convention 2016. For more details about how to win, click here. For assistance updating your League’s roster, download the user manual or contact membership@lwv.org.

Roster Update Challenge #2! (NEW)
This week we have another challenge — an opportunity for all Leagues to win great prizes! If you have upwards of 85 percent of your active League members’ birthdates entered into the Member Roster, LWVUS will send you some great items from our League Store! (Prizes determined by number of winners.) You have until January 31st to update this information to qualify. To see more about all of the challenges, click here.

OTHER

The League Store Has Grown (NEW)
The League Store has expanded! Looking for gifts for speakers, special guests, and your Board? How about for friends and family this holiday season? You can find many items that range from LWV notecards and car magnets to LWV Hot n’ Cold Tumblers to LWV laser etched pens with a stylus! You can also find all LWVUS publications. Click here to see what else is available for purchase.

TOTE

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