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League of Women Voters Leaders' Update

January 17, 2013

In This Issue:


  • League sends letter to VP Biden regarding Gun Control (NEW)
  • League Asks Senators to Oppose Changes to Contribution Limits (NEW)



  • No Rest for the Weary – Voter Suppression Continues in 2013 (NEW)
  • Join VOTE411 in 2013! (NEW)


  • Update Your Records Now! Your League May Win A Free Registration for the 2014 Convention! (NEW)
  • LWVUS Contest: Update the Expiration Dates of Members! (NEW)
  • Congratulations to the Winners of the Prospect Outreach Contest! (NEW)


  • Just in Time for the New Year
  • Leaving a Legacy-One of the Easiest Ways to Support the League for Years to Come


Get Started on the New League Forums

The League's aging discussion list system will be closing in early February 2013. In its place, we have built the League Forums, a new online community exclusively for League members and leaders. Don’t wait any longer, take the time today to log in and join the discussions on the League Forums.

Why should you join the League Forums?

  1. Like the discussion lists, the League Forums provide an opportunity to interact with fellow League members on specific topics and to share experiences and tools.
  2. The Forums notifications system allows you to decide if you want to follow a group (topic), a single discussion within a group, or even just a single person.
  3. All messages are archived online for future reference.
  4. You can easily build and manage your own personal profile.


Go to www.lwv.org, click on LOGIN in the top red bar. Once logged in, use the Forums link in the left navigation bar. Members interested in learning more are welcome to view a recorded webinar introducing the new Forums.

Dear Friend,

On Monday, I attended an event in New York City sponsored by No Labels, a bipartisan group that is looking for ways to bridge the partisan divide. The event featured elected officials, including members of Congress, who are willing to step up and be problem solvers.  The problem solver designation does not require any change in political beliefs; only a commitment to collaboration. While the focus in Washington tends to be on partisan labels, Monday’s event concluded with an exercise that reminded me of all the labels that we carry around with us. Age, race and gender, education, socioeconomic status, geography, immigration status and religious affiliation are only some of the labels that impact our political views. For some, one single label defines our politics for all time. Others of us may find that a succession of labels motivates us throughout our lifetimes. Regardless, we are all united with or divided from one another to varying degrees by those labels.

The League of Women Voters has a long history of gathering facts to spark a conversation aimed at reaching understanding and agreement on issues. Our ways are how we imagine a democracy should work. As a country, we are finding it harder and harder to find a common set of facts around which we can have a conversation. In many ways, legislative bodies appear to be fact-free zones these days.  Perhaps one fact we can all agree on is that politicians respond to constituencies and until those constituencies can reconcile their many labels, problems will be difficult to solve.

How do we solve the problem of problem-solving? On Monday, we concluded that the only real solution is more public engagement, a fact the League has recognized for nearly 93 years.  The future of No Labels  and the  form the League’s collaboration in this effort will take are  still evolving. But this much is clear.  We cannot come together as a community or a country without both facts and collaboration.

In League,
Description: Elisabeth



League sends letter to VP Biden regarding Gun Control (NEW)
On January 10, the League sent a letter to Vice President Biden urging him to propose common sense solutions to the gun violence plaguing our nation. The League advocates for measures that will ban assault weapons, place limits on magazine size, close the gun show loophole and mandate annual reporting on gun violence in America. The White House presented a proposal to Congress that includes many of the League’s proposed reforms.  Read our blog urging Congress to tackle this critical national issue now.

League Asks Senators to Oppose Changes to Contribution Limits (NEW)
The League joined coalition partners in sending a letter to the U.S. Senate. The letter calls on the Senate to oppose efforts to restore the party soft money system. It also asks the Senate to oppose increasing the limits on the aggregate amounts that an individual can give to parties or candidates.




No Rest for the Weary – Voter Suppression Continues in 2013 (NEW)
2013 is already shaping up to be one of the toughest years for voting rights in decades. The League is preparing for more photo ID legislation, Supreme Court decisions on the Voting Rights Act (VRA) and the National Voter Registration Act (NVRA) as well as working to defeat attacks to decrease early voting days, illegally purge voting rolls, and make it more difficult to register to vote. Read more here.

Join VOTE411 in 2013! (NEW)
Does your community have any elections in 2013? If so, the New Year brings a new opportunity for your League to create its own, online voters’ guide on VOTE411.org! In 2012 over 2.5 million voters turned to VOTE411 to get their election information. Leagues from 30 states created online voters’ guides to provide information on over 12,000 candidates and 5,100 races in their communities. If you’re interested in participating in VOTE411 for 2013, please contact Megan Brown (mbrown@lwv.org) and she’ll help answer any of your questions or walk you through the process!



Update Your Records Now! Your League May Win A Free Registration for the 2014 Convention! (NEW)
Let’s show how we’ve grown in 2012 through our efforts to Power the Vote!  The deadline for updating information in the database is Jan 31.  The top three Leagues with the greatest percentage growth from Jan 31, 2012-Jan 31, 2013 will win one free registration for the LWVUS convention in Dallas, TX in 2014! All other Leagues showing growth will be placed into a drawing for two additional winners.  That’s a $335 value (plus all the great networking and training one receives)!

To update your roster:  1. Log in to Update Your Roster (go to bottom right side). Using your League number and password, log in.  2. Update the expiration date (instructions available). Watch a recorded Database 101 webinar.  Contact Betty Taira at BTaira@lwv.org or Lela Sallis at LSallis@lwv.org with any questions about updating the LWVUS database.

LWVUS Contest! Update the Expiration Dates of Members! (NEW)
Update ALL the expiration dates on member records in the national database for your League by January 25 and be eligible to win a $25 Staples gift card. To update expiration dates, please see the instructions here.   Click here to find out about the contest and how to win great prizes (including registration to LWVUS Convention in 2014 mentioned above!) LWVUS wants to recognize you for your outstanding work.  We will celebrate the winning Leagues in the Leaders’ Update in the coming weeks.  For questions or assistance, email membership@lwv.org

Congratulations to the Winners of the Prospect Outreach Contest! (NEW)
LWVUS is proud to announce that the LWV of Carrollton (GA) is the winner of the Prospect Outreach Contest, reaching out to 248 prospective members! Congratulations to the Runners-Up: LWV of Mobile (AL), LWV of Montgomery County (IN), and LWV of Milwaukee (WI). Winners will receive LWV buttons to gain League visibility. Leagues followed-up with prospective members in a variety of ways including: sending personal emails with an invitation to become a member; asking prospects to share their interests; asking them to volunteer for activities such as election night reporting; and personal phone calls inviting perspective members to the next League event.



Just in Time for the New Year (NEW)
Start your New Year off with the newly revised LWVUS publication, Fundraising 101 – The League Way. Based on the publication that was distributed at Convention 2004, this edition has been updated throughout, with lots of new things added.  Check out reports on why people give, tips on writing fundraising letters, how to pursue corporate and foundation proposals, and more!  In addition, appendices offer a list of questions you might use to ask your donors to get to know them better when you call to thank them for their gift; a list of ideas for events that your League could hold; and an outline of the basic content that needs to go in a proposal to a foundation or a corporation.   This is THE publication to help you get started fundraising for your League—or for doing more with your existing program!

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.

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