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The League Update

March 1, 2018

Dear Friend,

As usual, young people are leading the way in demanding change. From the moving scene in Tallahassee last week, where thousands rallied for common sense gun reform to the many student walkouts being planned across the country for March 14 and other dates, we are witnessing a profound national moment. Our young people are saying "enough" and standing up for what's right.

We can help by doing what we do best - connecting our inspiring young people to the other ways they can make an impact, especially by voting. If you know of upcoming student marches or other action in your area, we hope you'll consider setting up complementary voter registration drives - either in-person or online - and connect with partners on the ground to see else how the League can get involved. For helpful tips and resources, please take a look at our youth voter registration training manual and newly updated sample questions for debates and voters’ guides. Finally, start tracking your election year activities so that, together, we’ll be able to tell the full scope of the impact made by our organization in this extraordinary year.

On this and other issues, there are also a number of ways to take action in your own state. Trendwatch from the Giffords Law Center highlights legislation moving at the state level. Learn about moving legislation, then check with your state League about taking action on priority issues. There's always an opportunity to do something and build momentum for national change, state by state.

Chris Carson


Convention 2018

The 53rd National Convention is June 28-July 1 in Chicago, IL. All available information on the convention can be found here. Please contact membership@lwv.org with any Convention related questions or concerns.

  • Today is the last day to submit your applications for the following:
  • Registration is open! You can register online here. The Early Bird Registration rate is $450.
  • 2018 Awards: Share the great work that your League has done during the past biennium by applying for a Convention award. Nominations are being accepted in three categories.
  • Caucuses: A limited number of meeting rooms at the Chicago Hilton have been reserved for local and state Leagues to sponsor caucuses. If you are considering sponsoring a caucus that fosters members’ learning and action, please read the instructions and criteria before you use the online form to submit an application.
  • Explore Chicago: The LWV of Illinois has arranged discounted architecture tours for Convention attendees. There will be two opportunities to take part in a river cruise and one opportunity for a walking tour. More information can be found here.

News of the Week

"[Gun legislation] shouldn’t be a partisan issue. It’s a public safety issue that affects all Americans no matter what the party." The League of Women Voters of Florida has been speaking out for smart gun laws in the wake of the tragic shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School last month.
Pope Francis endorsed Donald Trump. Clinton campaign Chairman John Podesta ran a child-sex ring from the basement of a Washington, D.C., pizza parlor. Democratic National Committee employee Seth Rich was assassinated last March to stop him from testifying to the FBI. Those falsehoods—or truths, depending on who you ask—and countless others were subject to a two-hour forum on media literacy, audience engagement and the evolving role of the press, hosted by LWV of Santa Maria Valley. View the forum here.
The League of Washington County, Arkansas is working in support of independent redistricting in the state. "One of the worst effects of gerrymandering is not what it does to the party out of power. It's what it does to independents. They really do lose all representation because the result of the general election is decided by the district map.”

Supreme Court hears Minnesota Voters Alliance v. Mansky

The Supreme Court heard arguments in Minnesota Voters Alliance v. Mansky on Wednesday, February 28. The case is a challenge to a Minnesota statute that says that a “political badge, political button, or other political insignia may not be worn at or about the polling place on primary or election day.” LWVUS filed an amicus brief in this case with the Brennan Center for Justice and the League of Women Voters of Minnesota. The brief argues that the law is put in place to safeguard the right to vote. The brief urges the court to adopt a targeted approach and not strike down the statute in its entirety if the court finds the law problematic.

Dream Act Stalled in Congress

Legislation to create a permanent fix for DACA recipients is stalled in Congress. March 5th is the date that the Trump Administration set for the end of the program. Despite recent court victories that temporarily halt the rescission of DACA there it is still a need to create a permanent legislative solution that protects Dreamers. Please join the League and tell Congress that we need to pass the Dream Act now!

Opportunity to Comment on Proposal to Allow Offshore Drilling

The Trump Administration’s plan to allow drilling along coasts of the United States (except Florida) will begin moving ahead this year, if not modified after the public comment period. This will take our country in the wrong direction in addressing climate change. There is still time, but not much, to submit comments on behalf of your League opposing the proposed policy shift. All concerned Leagues and members are urged to do so. The LWVUS Climate Change Task Force has developed some background and message points to consider when commenting. Public comment is being received through the Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) website until 11:59 Eastern on March 9th.

Deadline Extended for Comments on Clean Power Plan Rollback

The EPA has extended the deadline to comment on the planned rollback of the Clean Power Plan. Interested parties now have until April 26, 2018, to submit comments regarding this misguided action. The proposed rollback will greatly weaken the requirements to curb GHG emissions, taking our nation in the wrong direction on a critically important issue. All concerned Leagues and members are urged to submit comments opposing the weakening of this pivotal US climate policy. Please review the talking points and background information developed for this purpose. LWVUS submitted comments to the Environmental Protection Agency with regard to their plan to repeal the Clean Power Plan.

League Leaders

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League of Women Voters

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