IN THIS ISSUE...
By Becky Gladstone, LWVOR President
Happy Holidays! I hope most of us will find things to celebrate this month! I am thankful for the breadth of our intense League work! We’ve informed and engaged many voters this fall! We ran an invigorating Student Mock Election. Our 2023 Legislative session preparation was never paused. I am confident that our work across the country, with state leaders in touch comparing election news daily, made a big difference! I am so grateful to our LWVUN delegation at COP27 in Egypt in November.
With this December 2022 edition of The VOTER, we thank outgoing Editor Terry Styner
for her excellent organizing management this past year. We will need a new Editor,
volunteers welcome, for our spring 2023 edition, in time for LWVOR Convention 2023
When I started as President almost 4 years ago, improving communication was the
top “direction to the board.” Our leadership structure is knitting and weaving a more
compelling description than the “lateral communication” I have been calling for over
the years. We are strengthening our networks with local League leaders, Treasurers,
Voter Service, Nominating Committees, Youth Outreach, Development, Membership,
and others. We are helping each other, considering job sharing, and discussing
leadership teams. We have made great strides, and with new LWVOR board members.’
I am excited by the new members of the LWVOR Board and am looking forward to seeing
transitions at the 2023 LWVOR Convention! I hope many of you can attend in person
in Eugene because we truly have much to celebrate! We already have two state study
proposals in the discussion, and you should hear from their advocates soon, rallying
your support and participation. We expect a bylaws discussion to consider aspects of
change needed for a transition to annual meeting adoption of studies, for example.
We can only vaguely predict public health concerns and gas prices but hope these may be ebbing as barriers. I hope we can look forward to a Happy New Year!
My best to all of you, with thanks for your work!
Yours in League, Becky Gladstone
TIME TO THINK ABOUT LWVOR CONVENTION 2023
BY ROBIN TOKMAKIAN
The League’s convention is planned for May 2023 in Eugene. (specific date is May 19-21). It will be an in-person meeting to help facilitate and energize our membership. (Becky Gladstone here- we’re looking at virtual options). We look forward to hearing from Oregon leaders and networking with League members from around the state.
Local Leagues should start program planning activities soon. The deadline for submitting potential studies, updates, or other program ideas is February 6, 2023, for consideration at the LWVOR Board meeting. Present your program ideas to your local league, and communicate with others around the state to support your ideas. Your LWVOR Board looks forward to hearing what local leagues are interested in to address policies at the state level.
OREGON STUDENT MOCK ELECTION
BY BECKY GLADSTONE
Results are in! Students across Oregon participated in OSME, the 2022 Oregon Student Mock Election, for a realistic voting experience endorsed by Governor Kate Brown and Secretary of State Shemia Fagan.
The League of Women Voters of Oregon created a mock ballot, with Secretary of State review, mirroring the General Election ballot with three contests for all Oregon students: US Senator, Oregon Governor, and Measure 114 (gun safety). We honored educator requests for mock ballots with some local races.
Multnomah County students voted on Measure 26-232 (ranked-choice voting), Clackamas County students voted on County Clerk, and Deschutes County students voted on Measure 9-148 (nonpartisan county commissioner elections) and Measure 9-155 (a Bend-La Pine School District bond measure). Several regions voted on US Congressional Districts 5 and 6.
Every public school district and private/charter/homeschool educators across the state were invited to register for ballots, instructions, and a lesson plan. Over 5500 students were registered from an impressive 18 different communities all around Oregon: Astoria, Bend, Boring, Camas Valley, Crane, Days Creek, Hood River, Irrigon, Klamath Falls, Lake Oswego, Medford, North Bend, Portland, Salem, Sandy, Springfield, Tigard, Troutdale, West Linn, and Wilsonville.
Statewide Student Mock Ballot Results:
• Ron Wyden won US Senator with 53%.
• Tina Kotek won Oregon Governor with 54%.
• Measure 114 (gun safety) passed with 73% voting yes.
Local Student Mock Ballot Results:
• US Congressional District 5, Jamie McLeod-Skinner won with 73%.
• The new US Congressional District 6, Andrea Salinas, won with 59%.
• Multnomah County Measure 26-232 (ranked-choice voting) passed by 75%.
• Clackamas County Clerk Clackamas students elected Catherine McMullen by 59%.
• Deschutes students passed Measure 9-148 (nonpartisan county commissioners) by 88%.
• Deschutes Measure 9-155 (the school bond) also passed by 86%.
TOP LWVOR PRIORITIES
COP27 - DAILY REPORTS FROM THE LEAGUE
By Robin Tokmakian
The annual UN Climate Conference, COP27, is underway in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt, and 15 League representatives are attending this year (in-person and virtually) as observers for the League of Women Voters of the U.S.
11/7: Day 1 of COP27
REPORT SUBMITTED BY ROBIN TOKMAKIAN, LWVUS UN OBSERVER FOR CLIMATE
COP27 has begun. This first report will be short. Monday’s events were mostly introductory negotiation sessions and the world leader’s summit. President Biden has not arrived yet, but former Vice President Al Gore was in full voice.
Sharm-el-Sheik is, well, different. It is a purpose-built resort, and that is what it feels like. Some logistical things have gone smoothly - for example, security lines are not super long like in Glasgow (COP26), but eating places inside the UN space are few and far between. We are all hoping that things will improve as the side events begin tomorrow, and it will become even more crowded. Several LWV delegates have had the pleasure of swimming in the Red Sea, and we’ve tried the local seafood.
In the negotiation space - The women and gender constituency, along with an NGO human rights working group, are making their voices heard, but whether action by member states will occur, who knows? I heard on a bus ride that progress has been made in the area of “loss and damage” in the form of an added agenda item being approved to push for specific ‘loss and damage” funding. It is the beginning but will take a while to get any funding in place. Loss and damage funding is money to address things like the floods in Pakistan. It is different from adaptation funding. I had a conversation on the walk and shuttle ride to COP with a former assistant to the UN’s secretary general. He and a group he is with are pushing to change how climate ambition gets achieved. He thinks we should have it like the Olympics and award prizes for who does the best in various areas. Not sure how that would work, but interesting idea.
All for now.
Robin Tokmakian & the rest of the LWVUS team
11/16: Day 9 of COP27
REPORT SUBMITTED BY ROBIN TOKMAKIAN, LWVUS UN OBSERVER FOR CLIMATE
From my virtual view - a couple of things to note:
• UN organizations are siloed and don’t speak enough to each other - but it’s better than it was. For example, UN Biodiversity talks only recently included climate discussions.
• Women and Gender: 80% of the NDCs (Nationally Determined Contributions) mention gender and/or women, but it will still take 286 years to reach gender equality at the rate we are going. This is from a UNWomen report (don’t have a reference to report, yet).
• On Carbon Dioxide Removals using the ocean - there have been several efforts over the years since 2009 to produce governing principles for ethical research in this area - for example, the Oxford Principles for Geo-engineering and Principles for research into climate engineering techniques.
On the more COP-focused front, I joined my Indigenous sisters to stand against violence toward women and Indigenous peoples as a result of colonialism and extractive industry. We still do not have any concrete or substantive loss and damage finance from the negotiations. This is increasingly a hot topic, and it looks doubtful to me now. In the negotiations today, loss and damage finance was fiercely contested with some passionate and begging speeches by national representatives, yet the G20 and G7 have sought to protect their pockets, offering morsels for empathy that neither are financially sufficient nor would be controlled by the people in need of the funds. Here is one quote from Satyendra Prasad, Fiji’s Ambassador and Permanent Representative to United Nations:
“The world is barreling down the highway to climate hell, as the United Nations Secretary-General warned us. It isn’t Fiji’s foot on the gas pedal nor that of any Least Developed Country or Small Island Developing State. We are passengers – more like hostages trapped in a vehicle that is being recklessly steered by high emitters.”
Merilyn B. Reeves died peacefully in her sleep on October 7, 2022, with her daughter Julie by her side. She was born June 22, 1931, in her parent’s home in Idaho.
In 1954, Merilyn earned her Bachelor of Science degree from Utah State Agricultural College in Logan. In 1962, as a mother of three small children, Merilyn earned her master’s degree in Science in Education from the Northern State Teachers College in South Dakota.
Merilyn married Milt Reeves on June 28, 1952. For the next 30 years, they lived in Idaho, Utah, Texas, South Dakota, Minnesota, and Maryland and spent three summers in Saskatchewan, Canada, on a duck banding assignment.
Merilyn created her own vocation as a tireless environmental advocate and visionary leader. As a member of the League of Women Voters (LWV) for 62 years, she advocated for clean water, safe drinking water, clean air, and other natural resources issues when she lived in Bloomington, Minnesota, and Laurel, Maryland.
She served as Vice President of the LWVUS and lobbied the Legislature for 7 years on bills to strengthen pollution control. She was a leader in the needed management and protection of the Chesapeake Bay and served on several bi-state and Bay committees. In 1983, Maryland Governor Harry Hughes recognized Merilyn’s accomplishments by awarding her the title Admiral of the Chesapeake Bay.
On March 7, 2020, on the very cusp of the COVID-19 pandemic, the family and many others gathered in Salem, Oregon, at the Century Celebration in honor of the 100th Anniversary of the League of Women Voters and Ratification of the 19th Amendment of the United States Constitution, where Merilyn was presented with the Carrie Chapman Catt Award. She enjoyed meeting LWV colleagues and gave her final public speech.
‘TIS THE SEASON!
BY JACKIE CLARY
What do the LWVOR and all local Leagues in the state have in common this time of year (aside from holiday gatherings and fundraising efforts)? Well, nominating committees around the state are beginning, in earnest, the process of finding candidates for the board and off-board positions for the following League year. Thus “Tis the season for making lists and checking them twice.”
League members traditionally are busy, involved community members. But, if you ask any member of a League Board, they will say that they have added Board participation to all their other important commitments because they believe in our principles and have been able to find a meaningful niche to support the League while tapping into their own interests and skills. Could you challenge yourself to do the same? When approached by your local or state nominating committee, take a moment to think about
it. Could you become part of the solution and satisfy your own sense of wanting to make a difference by saying, “Yes?” Or, at least say you’ll help find someone else?
Each of us, as a member of the League of Women Voters, is an important part of any LWV nominating committee! At your next League gathering, be aware of candidate possibilities. Who asks the most comprehensive, interesting, thoughtful questions? Who has a good (appropriate, of course) sense of humor? Who stands out in a positive way?
By the way, you can suggest yourself as a candidate just by contacting someone on your local committee (or the state committee using the email address below).
Here’s to an incredible slate of candidates for 2023!
Thanks to you all for your dedication to LWV and all that you do to support our state and local Leagues.
From your LWVOR Nominating committee:
Libby Medley, Diana Bodtker, Doreen Binder, Freddi Weishahn, Jackie Clary
Please contact us through the LWVOR office: firstname.lastname@example.org or call 503-581-5722. We would be delighted to hear from you!
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