Next Tuesday is National Voter Registration Day. This is the third year that the League is participating in this national event and once again we anticipate that the League will be the single-largest on-the-ground presence. This year we will have more than 400 League events across the country. For the second year in a row I am privileged to participate in the NVRD event sponsored by the League of Women Voters of the City of New York. Kudos to the many Leagues who have already been promoting their registration events in local media and sharing their photos and successes with us on social media. Please keep it coming!
This week, New York, not Georgia has been on my mind as I have been enthralled by the latest Ken Burns documentary on The Roosevelts. The history of the first half of the 20th Century, from any point of view, is always fascinating because so many of the same political themes - money in politics, inequality, social upheaval and voting rights - are on display. Theodore Roosevelt re-invented the presidency to right so many of the social ills afflicting the country and Franklin Roosevelt carried on that tradition in rescuing the nation from the effects of the Great Depression. But for League members, there is always a special place for Eleanor Roosevelt. Though occupying a completely traditional role for a woman of her time and class, she, like her famous uncle and husband, re-invented the role of political spouse becoming an unparalleled public servant without ever holding elective office. It behooves us to remember, as she always did, that she learned everything she needed to know about public service from the League of Women Voters.
Eleanor Roosevelt was a member of the Dutchess County, New York League in its earliest days. She chaired the LWVNYS legislative committee in 1921 and served on the state League board in 1922. She remained a lifelong supporter of the League in New York. A wonderful booklet by League member Hilda Waltrous, In League with Eleanor, describes Narcissa Cox Vanderlip, chair of the New York State League, pouring tea for Eleanor Roosevelt whom she then asked to summarize and present the facts of selected legislation for the state League board and members.
The League offers so many discrete, but important volunteer opportunities for its members to learn and grow while making a difference in their communities. National Voter Registration Day is one such opportunity. Eleanor Roosevelt understood the importance of voting, especially for those whose voices are seldom heard. In the 1920’s, women voters were among that group. In 2014, the League of Women Voters continues to create opportunities for every eligible voter to make a difference on Election Day.
Apply for the “Most Fun Job in League”: Join the Ruth S. Shur Fellows! (LAST CHANCE)
“It’s the most fun job in League!” according to current national coach Lineah Davey (CO). Apply to be a Shur Fellow or nominate a League leader you admire to become part of our prestigious and fun national coaching team. The deadline is tomorrow, FRIDAY SEPT. 19! Please fill out this form to be considered. More information on the Shur Fellows and their role in the MLD program as well as the top seven reasons to become a Fellow are available online. You can also watch this recorded webinar to learn more about the program and to hear from some of the current Fellows about their experience coaching.
Webinar Opportunity: Storytelling for Recruitment and Engagement (REMINDER)
Join the Membership and Leadership Development (MLD) program on Wednesday, September 24 at 1 pm ET for a webinar about how stories can be used to communicate the League’s mission and work to connect with current and prospective members and donors. We’ll look at theory and possible action steps. Use this link to register. Please register early as space is limited!
Promote Your Registration Events in the Media! (LAST CHANCE)
Be sure to let your community know where and when you will be registering voters this year! Use our new press release template to send out custom messages to media in your area. If you are one of the 400 Leagues participating in National Voter Registration Day on Tuesday, be sure to enter in your event information on the website so that the public can find you! Then, download the free communications toolkit and graphics to promote your event far and wide. Earlier this week, the LWVUS sent out an editorial board memo to papers across the county urging writers to call attention to the importance of NVRD and voter registration on opinion pages during the next week.
Sample Voter Registration Social Media Content for Leagues (NEW)
Please use our new Sample Voter Registration Social Media Content document to help your state or local League utilize its social media channels for ultimate impact in your promoting voter registration efforts on National Voter Registration Day (9/23) and throughout the season. We’ve included general information about key hashtags and images to use, as well as draft content and suggested timing. Please feel free to tailor these messages to fit the elections in your community. And, please be sure to share photos of your voter registration drives on social media and send them to Renee Davidson (email@example.com) so that we can help broadcast them to a larger audience!
Advocates Will Appeal Decision Allowing WI Photo ID Bill to Be Implemented (NEW)
ACLU-Wisconsin and The Advancement Project announced yesterday they will ask the full 7th Circuit Court of Appeals to re-hear their voter photo ID challenge. They hope the full court would recognize the considerable burden placed on voters and election officials by last Friday's ruling which allowed voter ID to be implemented in the November 4 election and stop implementation until a final decision is reached on the case. LWVWI is actively working in coalition to mitigate the impact this decision is having on voters in WI.
DEADLINE EXTENDED: U.S. Constitution Study Committee Application (REMINDER)
Applications are being accepted for the U.S. Constitution Study which is part of the three-part Structures of Democracy program that delegates adopted at the 2014 LWVUS Convention. The study will examine the application of Article V of the United States Constitution, which provides for amending the Constitution. An application form, which includes further description of the study focus, is now posted online. Those interested in applying for the U.S. Constitution Study Committee should submit completed applications, including resume, references and writing sample, by September 25.
DEADLINE EXTENDED: LWVUS Money in Politics Education Committee Application (REMINDER)
Members are sought for the LWVUS Money in Politics Education Committee. Money in Politics (MIP) is part of the three-part Structures of Democracy program that delegates adopted at the 2014 LWVUS Convention. We are currently accepting applications for the MIP Committee which will focus on the core League issue of campaign finance and money in politics. The Committee will review the League position on campaign finance and educate members and the general public about issues related to money in politics. An application form is now posted online. Those interested in applying for the MIP Education Committee should submit completed applications, including resume, references and writing sample by September 25.
This Weekend: League to Participate in the People’s Climate March (UPDATED)
Join the League at the People’s Climate March in New York City this Sunday, September 21! The March will bring together thousands of people to show support for meaningful action to fight climate change. This will be the largest show of support for the fight against climate change in history. For additional information and to get involved, visit peoplesclimate.org.
Recording of Call with EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy (REMINDER)
A recording of the conference call held with League members and Gina McCarthy, Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), is now available. Administrator McCarthy discussed the ongoing work being done to fight climate change at the national level, including the EPA's Clean Power Plan which limits carbon emissions from power plants. Administrator McCarthy called upon League members to continue the dialogue within their own communities and states about the necessity of this ground breaking regulation and to submit comments to the EPA on this proposal.
Voting Rights Act Turns 49 (REMINDER)
For 49 years, the Voting Rights Act (VRA) has protected the right to vote regardless of race or language, but legislation to repair damage from the Supreme Court’s decision in Shelby v. Holder is currently stalled in the U.S. House. Tell your Representative to stop stalling and move the Voting Rights Amendment Act forward!