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League of Women Voters Leaders' Update

November 29, 2012

In This Issue:

ADVOCACY

  • Take Action: Tell Congress to Fix the Cliff (NEW)
  • League Participates in Clean Air Defense Blog Carnival (NEW)
  • League signs on to Amicus Brief in Texas Voter Registration Case (NEW)
  • League Requests Meeting with Speaker Boehner (NEW)

COMMUNICATIONS – MAKING CONNECTIONS

  • Local and State Leagues on Facebook (NEW)
  • WEBINAR: Replacing League Discussion Lists… Introducing “The League Forums” (NEW)

MEMBERSHIP & LEADERSHIP

  • Learn about the Ruth S. Shur Fellows: Webinar on Dec 13 at 1pm ET (NEW)
  • Reminder #2: Update Your Membership Rosters (NEW)
  • Give Thanks for (and Renew) Your Members This Holiday Season! (NEW)

EDUCATON FUND (Elections & Agriculture Update)

  • Attack on Voting Continues – Post Election (NEW)
  • Complete Our Power the Vote Feedback Survey (Free Materials Available!)
  • Agriculture Update: LWVUS Board Adopts Tentative Scope
  • Agriculture Update: LWVUS Board Invites Applications for Agriculture Update Committee

OTHER

  • Registration for Commission on the Status of Women Open (NEW)
  • Leaving a Legacy

Dear Supporter,

So much good work was done during election season that it is truly hard to come off the post-election high and shift toward influencing public policy.   But we are doing it.

Across the country, Leagues are planning holiday parties, many of which will include state legislative delegations. Congress is back in session with a fiscal cliff very much on legislative minds. The League is speaking out on this issue from our position on funding the federal government. The League studied this issue back in the 1980’s, another time when the size and role of the federal government were very much at issue.

So much of what is being debated in Congress right now is less about the specifics of debt and deficits than it is about the proper role of government.  The League position on funding the federal government recognizes  and supports the  positive role that government can play in leveling the playing field and making it possible for every American to realize his or her dream. Deficit reduction is important, but we can't harm the economy as we address that issue.  Even as we are focusing on going another round in the state legislatures on voting rights, as we prepare to help our communities understand the importance of the Voting Rights Act, we need to stand up for our vision of an America in which every citizen has a chance to make a better life, where every immigrant has a chance to become a citizen and where citizens who have worked hard all their lives can look forward to living out their lives with independence and dignity. That is what is truly at issue as we debate the so-called fiscal cliff.

The League has always stood for fairness and openness and a voice for all in our democracy. Let us use our voice to stand up for the community that our federal government represents.

In League,

Description: Elisabeth
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Advocacy

Take Action: Tell Congress to Fix the Cliff (NEW)
The January 1 deadline is fast approaching and steep and unsustainable spending cuts and tax increases threaten to harm the economy.  The time has come for our leaders to come together and move our country forward.  Join us in telling Congress to support a new direction for federal fiscal policy.

League Participates in Clean Air Defense Blog Carnival (NEW)
The League is joining clean air advocacy groups including Mom’s Rising, the American Lung Association and many others to discuss climate change and defend the Clean Air Act. Join us for a twitter chat at 9 PM ET, Thursday, November 29. You can also check out our blog calling on President Obama to take the lead on climate change and the other blog submissions from around the environmental community.

League Signs on to Amicus Brief in Texas Voter Registration Case (NEW)
The League of Women Voters joined the Brennan Center for Justice and Rock the Vote in filing a brief of Amici Curiae to the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals. The brief argues that Texas laws controlling voter registration drives violate and unjustifiably burden the First Amendment rights of groups like the League that encourage civic engagement by conducting voter registration drives.

League Requests meeting with Speaker Boehner (NEW)
The League joined coalition partners in requesting a meeting with Speaker of the House, John Boehner to discuss the Office of Congressional Ethics to determine his thoughts on the current ethics process, and the plans for the appointment of new Board members.

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Communications - Making Connections

Local and State Leagues on Facebook (NEW)
Recently a note on the LWVUS Facebook page contained an important list. This Note  had a list of links to all League Facebook pages and League Facebook groups we know about.  Is your page/group on our list? Don’t be left out.  Let us help you make connections!  Please send Stephanie Drahan (sdrahan@lwv.org) the name of your League and a link to your League’s Facebook page so we can add you to the list.

WEBINAR: Replacing League Discussion Lists…Introducing “The League Forums” (NEW)
Registration is open! Participate in the League Forums webinar on December 11 at 2 pm ET. The webinar will include an explanation of the new League Forums, a demonstration of how they work and show-off some of the exciting features available with this technology.  After participating we are sure you will want to log-on to this new League community to interact with fellow League members around the country to examine specific topics and share your experiences.

MEMBERSHIP & LEADERSHIP

Learn about the Ruth S. Shur Fellows: Webinar on Dec 13 at 1pm ET (NEW)
Learn to strengthen our democracy by building stronger Leagues nationwide. Grow on a personal level and network with other League leaders.  Participate in the Shur Fellows informational webinar on Thursday, December 13th at 1pm ET (Noon CT, 11am MT, 10 am PT). Register today to participate! Read about the Ruth S. Shur Fellows and check out the online nomination form. Nominations are due January 7, 2013. Email SSanders@lwv.org with questions.

Reminder #2: Update Your Membership Rosters (NEW)
Please remember to update your League’s membership information.  The deadline is January 31, 2013, but all Leagues are encouraged to routinely update membership information to avoid the rush in January.  If you need assistance, contact Betty Taira at BTaira@lwv.org.  Remember to include your League’s ID number in the subject line - example: (CA123).

Give Thanks for (and Renew) Your Members This Holiday Season! (NEW)
The holiday season is the perfect time to give thanks for your members and supporters. Send a letter, shoot an email, or make a phone call to thank them for their volunteer work and support this election season and throughout the year. Highlight successful League events , your League’s connections with your community, and the impact your League had over the course of 2012. Be sure to include an easy way for your members to donate money and renew their membership!

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EDUCATION FUND

Attack on Voting Continues - Post Election (NEW)
Political leaders in Wisconsin have wasted no time in continuing their fight against voting rights in the state.  This time politicians are talking about doing away with same day voter registration, a provision that has been in place for 36 years.  They claim they’re trying to “help poll workers and elections officials.”  However, “the state's municipal clerks — the ones who run elections — are not looking to be relieved of the extra work, said Diane Hermann-Brown, election communications chairwoman for the Wisconsin Municipal Clerks' Association.”  Find additional coverage here.

Please Complete Our Power the Vote Feedback Survey (Free Materials Available!)
Please take a few minutes to fill out our Election 2012 Voter Service survey and tell us what your League did to engage voters this year. Your answers will help inform our future trainings, materials, and grant programs, enable us to better highlight Leagues’ work from across the nation, and allow us to have more productive conversations with funders and partners. Your feedback is important to us! Any League completing the survey will be offered *FREE* VOTE411.org sports bags as part of our thanks for filling it out.

Agriculture Update: LWVUS Board Adopts Tentative Scope
The LWVUS Board has named the study passed by Convention 2012 as the Agriculture Update. Subject to review and recommendation by the Update Committee, the Board also adopted this scope for the update: “The Agriculture Update will focus narrowly on (1) current technology issues in agriculture including genetically modified organisms (GMOs), herbicides, pesticides, sustainable farming, agriculture water pollution, aquifer depletion, antibiotics in livestock, and accurate food labeling; and (2) current agriculture finance issues including consolidation in agriculture industries, crop subsidies and the federal agricultural regulatory process.”

Agriculture Update: LWVUS Board Invites Applications for Agriculture Update Committee
Under supervision of the LWVUS Board, committee members will be responsible for selecting or developing study materials, developing consensus questions, and reviewing/tabulating responses submitted by participating Leagues. The proposed timeline extends from January 2013 to April 2014. If you are interested in being a member of the Agriculture Update Committee, please complete the online application form and submit it along with your resume no later than December 3, 2012. Any questions may be directed to Norman Turrill, Agriculture Update Chair, at lwvturrill@mac.com

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OTHER

Registration for Commission on the Status of Women Open (NEW)
Registration is now open for the 57th Commission on the Status of Women. CSW 57 will be held at UN Headquarters in New York City March 4-15, 2013. This year's theme is Preventing Violence Against Women & Girls and is expected to draw thousands of participants from around the world. If any League member is interested in attending, please contact Rosalee Keech, our UN Observer (unobserver@lwv.org) by no later than January 10, 2013. The League is limited to no more than 20 attendees – registration is on a first come, first serve basis.

Leaving a Legacy - One of the Easiest Ways to Support the League for Years to Come
Include the League of Women Voters Education Fund in your will and offer support to 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.

Donate to the League and support our work.

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League of Women Voters
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Phone: 202-429-1965

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