April 2, 2015
Today marks one year since the Supreme Court invalidated limits on the total amount an individual can donate to candidates or political parties. In McCutcheon v. Federal Election Commission (FEC) the Court said that big money is worth more than the voices of individual voters. We saw the results in the 2014 midterm elections which were the most expensive in U.S. history. Although the amount of money spent in those elections went up, the number of donors actually went down. A mere 604 individual donors pumped $31 million more into the election than if the limits had stayed in place.
One hundred years ago, the fight to get the vote for women faced a determined opposition funded by a relatively few well-heeled donors. In 1915, a suffrage parade of 30,000 women and men marched down Fifth Avenue in New York City past the Union League Club where a group of great men in city affairs watched. One of these men jumped to his feet and exclaimed, “I never understood the menace of this woman suffrage campaign as I do now. Here is a hundred dollars to defeat it. Who will join me?” Carrie Chapman Catt remarked on this occasion that “the dollars came plentifully, for the politically great find democracy troublesome.”
The League of Women Voters, the legacy of that fight for equal votes for women, does not find democracy troublesome! On the occasion of this anniversary, let us renew our commitment to Making Democracy Work® by reminding voters that only a flood of votes can defeat a flood of dollars. Let us put democracy back in the hands of people by doing all we can to protect the vote and expose those who seek to put their money ahead of our voices.
To help keep your members informed, please consider forwarding this weekly message. Please note that this is an internal communication that provides both announcements and opportunities meant only for your members and League, as well as updates on important news and events. This message should not be posted in its entirety on League social media channels or websites. Instead consider sharing the external (e.g. public interest/action) pieces such as blog posts, letters to Congress and press statements.
IN THIS ISSUE:
MEMBERSHIP & LEADERSHIP
- Tips and Treasures for Treasurers Webinar - April 22nd (NEW)
- Success Story: North Carolina holds MLD Training at Black Mountain (NEW)
- “Take Note” of Your League’s Volunteers during National Volunteer Week (REMINDER)
EDUCATION FUND - ELECTIONS
- LWVOH Successfully Urges Governor to Veto Anti-Voter Language (NEW)
- Stock up Early: FREE Spanish & English Elections Materials Available (NEW)
- Interested in Registering New Citizens to Vote? (REMINDER)
EDUCATION FUND - STRUCTURES OF DEMOCRACY
- Money in Politics Forum Up and Running (REMINDER)
- League Opposes Attempt to Block Potential Tool to Address Carbon Pollution (NEW)
- Webinar Recording: Putting Together a Local Action Plan (REMINDER)
- Action Alert: Urge the President to Fully Reject the Keystone XL Pipeline (REMINDER)
- Looking Back, Moving Forward: Former LWVUS Presidents Reflect on 95 Years of Making Democracy Work® (NEW)
- Is Your League's Website Fast, Easy, Affordable and Effective? Consider League Easy Web (LEW)! (NEW)
- GUIDE: How to Create a Facebook Page for Your League (REMINDER)
- Join the United Nations e-Discussion on Innovation and Technology for Inclusion (REMINDER)
- LWV Online Store Closing April 30 - Inventory Available at Little to No Cost (REMINDER)
MEMBERSHIP & LEADERSHIP
Tips and Treasures for Treasurers Webinar - April 22nd (NEW)
If you are about to take on the role of League treasurer or are interested in a basic refresher session, please join national Treasurer, Pat Donath and LWVUS staff for this webinar on April 22nd at 12:00 PM - Noon (Eastern). Please register early and we'll invite you to share a question in advance that might be incorporated into the session.
Success Story: North Carolina holds MLD Training at Black Mountain (NEW)
Over the weekend of March 20, the LWV of North Carolina’s Membership & Leadership Development team hosted a training event for the LWV of Henderson County. The event not only covered the “nitty-gritty” details of a Board’s function but also delved into deeper more meaningful conversations on Board cooperation, the best practices of hosting events and how to ensure that each event is effective, current and relevant to the community. Read more about this highly successful training and see what participants gained from the experience.
"Take Note" of Your League's Volunteers during National Volunteer Week (REMINDER)
National Volunteer Week, an annual celebration to honor individuals who dedicate themselves to taking action on a variety of issues in their communities, is April 12-18. This is the perfect opportunity to thank those League members and supporters who add to our success. Use this postcard to send a personal note of thanks, and this press template can be customized to gain visibility for your League while acknowledging the contributions of League members.
EDUCATION FUND - ELECTIONS
LWVOH Successfully Urges Governor to Veto Anti-Voter Language (NEW)
At the urging of LWVOH and other voting rights coalition members, Gov. John Kasich used his line-item veto authority to kill language that would have required out-of-state college students who register to vote in Ohio to quickly obtain in-state licenses and vehicle registrations in order to vote. This is a victory for young voters and those fighting in several states against similar attempts to suppress student voters.
Stock up Early: FREE Spanish & English Elections Materials Available (NEW)
LWVUS is pleased to offer FREE (just pay for S&H) get-out-the vote materials through April 30. Both the “5 Things” Cards and the “VOTE” brochures are available in Spanish, and the “Vote” brochure also available in English. See the publications and view the full text under “details” for each item here: https://salsa.wiredforchange.com/o/5950/t//14143/shop/index.jsp?storefront_KEY=204. Order now to take advantage of this FREE offer!
Interested in Registering New Citizens to Vote? (REMINDER)
LWVEF has a handy toolkit to help Leagues conduct effective voter registration at naturalization ceremonies for new citizens. The toolkit, available for free download at http://forum.lwv.org/member-resources/article/naturalization-ceremony-voter-registration-toolkit, includes League-tested strategies for working with officials who host naturalization ceremonies, tips for improving voter registration rates at ceremonies, a customizable media advisory template to help spread the word about your great work, and inspiring success stories from Leagues who are already working to engage new citizens. Now is the time to start thinking about a great naturalization ceremony program ahead of the big 2016 election year!
EDUCATION FUND - STRUCTURES OF DEMOCRACY
Money in Politics Forum Up and Running (REMINDER)
The Money in Politics Forum is now active for League members who are interested in discussing the Money in Politics review and update. Barbara Zia, MIP Committee Chair will moderate the forum. To sign up, go to the Member Resources Site (forum.lwv.org), sign in and join the Money in Politics Forum (listed under Forums in the red navigation bar). If you have already signed up for the Money in Elections Forum, that has now been combined with Money in Politics, so there is no need to register. You may also reach Barbara directly at MIPCommitteeChair@lwv.org.
League Opposes Attempt to Block Potential Tool to Address Carbon Pollution (NEW)
The League joined a fact sheet sent to U.S. Senators opposing an amendment proposed by Senator Roy Blunt (R-MO) that would block a potential tool to address carbon pollution. Amendment #928 was proposed and accepted during the vote-a-rama surrounding debate on the U.S. Senate's proposed federal budget.
Webinar Recording: Putting Together a Local Action Plan (REMINDER)
The LWVUS Program Planning and Support (PP&S) Committee webinar featuring LWVUS Advocacy Chair Chris Carson and state Leaders outlined the basics of creating a local action plan. The webinar was designed to help Leagues learn and review the basics for creating an advocacy campaign. You can view a recording of the webinar here.
Action Alert: Urge the President to Fully Reject the Keystone XL Pipeline (REMINDER)
President Obama fulfilled his promise to veto legislation approving the Keystone XL (KXL) pipeline! The League is proud to stand behind the President’s veto because the pipeline is not in our national interest. But the fight is not over - President Obama and the U.S. State Department must still make a final decision on the Keystone XL pipeline. Thank President Obama for vetoing the pipeline legislation and urge him to reject final approval of the Keystone XL pipeline once and for all!
Looking Back, Moving Forward: Former LWVUS Presidents Reflect on 95 Years of Making Democracy Work® (NEW)
For our final blog post during Women’s History Month, we interviewed recent past presidents of LWVUS to hear what brought them to the League and what they hope to see the League accomplish in our next 95 years.
Is Your League's Website Fast, Easy, Affordable and Effective? Consider League Easy Web (LEW)! (NEW)
League Easy Web (LEW) is technology used by 259 Leagues in 40 states to create, host and maintain their websites. For those interested, we have an extensive information and help site about LEW and you can see all the Leagues across the country who use LEW on this list of LEW sites. All local Leagues are invited to try the LEW system for free: just contact us.
GUIDE: How to Create a Facebook Page for Your League (REMINDER)
A recent report shows that 88 percent of millennials receive some news via their Facebook feed. A Facebook page can help your League reach millennials as well as other target audiences. Our new document will walk you through the process of setting up an organizational page for your League, including explanations, tips and best practices.
Join the United Nations e-Discussion on Innovation and Technology for Inclusion (REMINDER)
The UNDESA Division for Social Policy and Development (DSPD) launched a yearlong campaign called “For Inclusion. For Equality. For People.” Throughout the campaign, UNDESA DPSD will be holding e-discussions regarding how the international community can facilitate knowledge sharing and access to new technologies and innovation to all social groups. This month’s e-discussion focuses on how innovation and technologies can provide an essential enabling environment for empowerment of all, especially people living in vulnerable situations. Read more and participate in this all-important discussion!
LWV Online Store Closing April 30 - Inventory Available at Little to No Cost (REMINDER)
LWVUS will be closing its online store at the end of April due to low demand for products and publications, and the high cost of maintaining this business. At the same time, we are exploring alternative avenues that will allow LWVUS to offer core organizational publications through more efficient and cost effective means. Stay tuned for future details. Between now and store’s closing, we are offering Leagues and members one last opportunity to get branded LWV items and publications at rock bottom prices. Some items are even FREE (shipping and handling charges apply)! Check out what is still available in the online store and act fast. Items available right now include LWV publications “Observing Your Government In Action,” “Membership Brochure,” “Vote” brochure (Spanish & English), and “5 Things you need to know on Election Day cards” (Spanish only). In addition, branded items such as note cards, tumblers, tattoos and pins are also available. The last day to place orders is April 15th (easy to remember since it’s Tax Day)! Inquiries should be directed to email@example.com.
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