Read LWVUS info directly below. Find LWVC updates here. Get latest LWV Bay Area news here.
National News & Advocacy Edited from The League Update of 14 March 2019
Partisan Gerrymandering Cases Before SCOTUS The League of Women Voters of Maryland joined the Benisek v. Lamone case alongside a handful of organizations as an amici in a brief called the “civil society” filing.
The amici curiae, or "friends of the court," are organizations whose public policy goals rely upon fair elections to ensure that elected policy makers represent and are meaningfully accountable to their constituents. The League will be co-hosting a rally in support of the three cases before the U.S. Supreme Court, as well as the set of consolidated cases before the Court on which we are named plaintiff: Rucho v. LWVNC, consolidated with Common Cause v. Rucho.
HR1 Passes in the U.S. House HR1, the For the People Act, passed in the U.S. House on Friday, March 8, and LWVUS staff was there to see it! This landmark legislation is the biggest improvement to our democracy since the Voting Rights Act. The League is now focused on advocacy efforts in the U.S. Senate.
League Submits Amicus Brief in Juliana v. U.S. LWVUS and LWVOR submitted an amicus brief to the 9th Circuit in the case of Juliana v. U.S. The brief was submitted in favor of the young plaintiffs arguing that it is the job of the federal government to protect them from the damaging effects of climate change. The brief also argues that it is the job of the courts to address claims that are asserted by the politically powerless and the courts should act to fulfill that vital function by allowing the merits of this case to proceed to the trial process.
Improving Civics Education The LWV of Greenwich (CT) has piloted a successful civics education program in partnership with local high schools, using cases from Harvard Business School Professor David Moss’s recent book, Democracy: A Case Study. Survey results from the pilot show significantly increased interest in voting, political engagement and constructive debate. Leagues from around the country are now invited to nominate outstanding high school teachers to attend an all-expenses-paid professional development workshop at Harvard, led by Professor Moss, which will equip them to facilitate case discussions in their classrooms and communities.
How the Daughters and Granddaughters of Former Slaves Secured Voting Rights for All Historian Martha S. Jones tells the stories of the suffragists who were often overshadowed by the big names often associated with the movement because of their race. Activists like Frances Ellen Watkins Harper, Eliza Gardner, and Julia Foote are figures who stand out, in Jones's words, as "unparalleled advocates of universal suffrage in its truest sense." Read about their stories from Smithsonian Magazine. News of the Week
LWV Ohio filed a lawsuit this week along with several other organizations, arguing that Ohio's current district map violates voters' rights and should be redrawn. The suit has the potential to give Ohio voters fair maps before 2020 elections.
LWV Florida president Patricia Brigham outlined common-sense changes to improve elections and make democracy work in Florida in this Tampa Bay Times opinion column.
Tracy Adkinson, LWV Georgia president, spoke to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution about the importance of female representation in lawmaking. With more women in the general assembly, she says, more bills are being filed that address issues specific to women.
California News & Advocacy Edited from LWVC email of 01 Mar 2019
Who: Attendance at Convention is open to everyone; we encourage all members to attend and are eager for the public to come learn about the League. We ask that you extend invitations to your friends and contacts.
Purpose of Convention The purpose of Convention is to inspire and empower Californians to increase their active and informed participation in civic life. Come meet passionate people from across the state who are making democracy work!
Read more about speakers, workshops, special activities, and more on the LWV of California website. A range of activities is available to suit any schedule or budget, from investing in a full three-day registration to treating yourself to a special pre-Convention event. Check out your options now—early bird registration begins today, March 1, and ends on April 30. The Westin Pasadena Hotel is offering a special room rate of $179 per night—but you must book by April 30 to secure this rate. Visit the Convention website to book online, or you can call the hotel and mention the LWVC Convention. Don’t get caught without a room by waiting until the last minute; rooms may sell out before that date!
The California State Board has set aside a scholarship fund to help reduce barriers for those who would otherwise be unable to attend Convention. We have a limited amount of funding, so applicants are encouraged to submit as soon as possible. We are accepting applications on a rolling basis.
Business of Convention This is the first call to Convention 2019 as required by the LWVC bylaws, Article IX, Section 8. The LWVC Bylaws govern the composition and business of the convention. Our bylaws direct us (See Article IX, Sec. 5) to:
Elect officers, directors, and members of the nominating committee for the 2019-2021 biennium (Article IX, Sec. 5)
Adopt a budget for the 2019-2021 fiscal years (Article VIII, Sec. 2)
Adopt program for 2019-2021 (Article XI)
Adopt amendments to the bylaws as needed (Article XII)
Voting Delegates Attending as a voting delegate is an exciting honor and a responsibility. If you are interested in attending as a voting delegate, speak with your local League or Inter-League Organization (ILO) board immediately. Voting delegates to the convention are detailed in Article IX, Sections 2 and 4:
Each local League and ILO is entitled to send its president, or an alternate in the event the president is unable to attend. The president of a member-at-large unit may attend as a nonvoting member.
In addition, each local League is entitled to delegates in proportion to its membership numbers as reported in the LWVUS database on January 31, 2019.
Member-at-large unit members may attend as nonvoting members.