Making Democracy Work

MAKING DEMOCRACY WORK

The League of Women Voters is a nonpartisan political organization encouraging informed and active participation in government. It influences public policy through education and advocacy.

Annual Meeting was May 14

A capacity crowd listens attentively as Zoe Clark and Rick Pluta shared insights about current Michigan Politics. Zoe is Program Director for Michigan Radio (97.1 FM). She and Rick, co-host It's Just Politics, a weekly look at Michigan politics airing Monday mornings on Morning Edition.

(L) Sue Smith, out-going LWVAAA President

(R) Joan Sampieri, in-coming LWVAAA President, cuts the cake celebrating the 100th anniversary of the year Michigan women first got the vote in 1919.

May 2019 NEWSLETTER IS HERE

Implementing Election Reform in Michigan

Wondering about how those Michigan Constitutional Amendments are being implemented?

Proposal 2 established a Commission of Citizens to draw district lines for the Michigan legislature and Michigan's members of Congress. Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson has issued a Citizens' Guide describing how to volunteer to serve on the commission.

Proposal 3 contained a number of changes that will improve voter access to the polls. The flyer New Rights for Michigan Voters describes changes in voter registration and the process for voting absentee.

WEMU interview continues "Know Your County Government"

On June 17, Lisa Barry talked with Washtenaw County parks official Ginny Trocchio about the county's Natural Area Preservation Program.

Ginny is the Superintendent of Park Planning and Natural Areas for the Washtenaw County Parks and Recreation Commission. The interview is the second in our series about getting to know your Washtenaw County government.

Planning for Centennial Celebration is Underway

To join the Planning Committee, contact Nancy Schewe at celebration@lwvannarbor.org

Centennial Resources

BUILDING A MORE PERFECT DEMOCRACY is the theme for celebrating the passage of the 19th Amendment of the US Constitution in 1920 after more than 70 years of effort. The Amendment simply states :The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex. We'll also celebrate the 1920 founding of The League of Women Voters to support the new women suffrage rights.

Not everyone had voting rights after the 19th Amendment:

  • Many African Americans were denied the right to vote until the Voting Rights Act was passed in 1964.
  • Asians were denied citizenship and therefore could not vote until 1952.
  • Native Americans were not considered citizens until 1924 but did not gain the right to vote until 1947
  • And even today some people are denied the right to vote. For example, felons who have already paid their debt to society are denied the right to vote in some states.
  • Residents of Washington D.C. can vote for the President, but do not have a representative in Congress

Our work is not done. That is why the anniversary is relevant.

Brews & Views hears about money in MI politics

At February's Brews & Views at Pointless Brewery and Theater an attentive crowd braved the cold, snowy night to hear Craig Mauger, Michigan Campaign Finance Network, describe the growing influence of money in Michigan politics.

MCFN's work to assist the public in understanding the role that contributions to politicians play is critical to the healthy operation of a democratic system of governance. The primary tools of this effort are transparent, timely and fact-based research and analysis made available to the general public, voters, policy makers and those people and organizations who are attempting to shape public policy.

Gerrymandering Lawsuit Trial

FROM LWV MI newsletter:

"We went to court!

LWVMI v Benson was heard by a panel of three federal judges at the US District Court, Eastern District of Michigan, Southern Division. We were in court February 5 - 7th. Final documents have to be submitted by February 22. A ruling will come later.

We especially thank the lawyers for their dedicated work on our behalf, the many League members who testified, provided depositions and attended the hearings and all of the donors who made this possible!

If you want to read more details, please go to the Brennan Center website.

And there are stories about the trial in Bridge Magazine:
Expert testifies gerrymandering in Michigan is worse than almost anywhere
Ex-Democratic chief says Michigan gerrymandering scared off candidates
Redistricting guru: Michigan's maps are legal, even if process was political

LWV MI adopts LWV US statement

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Policy LWV is an organization fully committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion in principle and in practice. There shall be no barriers to full participation in this organization on the basis of gender, gender identity, ethnicity, race, native or indigenous origin, age, generation, sexual orientation, culture, religion, belief system, marital status, parental status, socioeconomic status, language, accent, ability status, mental health, educational level or background, geography, nationality, work style, work experience, job role function, thinking style, personality type, physical appearance, political perspective or affiliation and/or any other characteristic that can be identified as recognizing or illustrating diversity. Diversity, equity, and inclusion are central to the organization's current and future success in engaging all individuals, households, communities, and policy makers in creating a more perfect democracy.

Two New Leagues are sponsored by LWV-AAA

A new League has formed in the Brighton-Howell Area, joining the Tecumseh League formed in 2017. These small, but enthusiastic units will operate for two years under the sponsorship of the Ann Arbor Area League, after which they can become separate organizations. Their events are included in the LWVAAA Calendar.

To learn more about LWV Tecumseh, you can email lwvtecumseh@gmail.com Their website is under development.

To learn more about LWV Brighton/Howell Area, contact info@LWVBrightonHowellArea.org They have a website and a Facebook page

YOU CAN HAVE YOUR OWN SUPER LWV T-SHIRT

For order form, go to FORM

More volunteers at LWV art fair booth July 2012

YOUR ELECTED OFFICIALS (printable brochure)

YOUR ELECTED OFFICIALS 2018-2019 shows the results of the November 2017 election and also upcoming election dates for 2018 and 2019. The printable brochure gives names and contact information for elected officials for this area including local, state and national.

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