Dear LWVOR Members,
September means back to school and continuing election prep! Please read for our state ballot measure positions, Oregon Student Mock Elections news, Volunteer Opportunities, and ongoing Columbia River Treaty work from Action. Please be sure everyone you know is aware of our work to include all Oregon candidates in our Vote411 and various Voters’ Guides!
As we face the pressing issues coming for this fall’s elections, I am so proud of our members for stepping up and Making Democracy Work!
Yours In League!
Thank you to the LWV of Coos County for the invitation to join their first board meeting of the fall, with many board members meeting each other for the first time, as new members and in-person! The two photos on the right are from LWVPDX, on Women’s [In]Equality Day, August 26, 2022. Please send your pictures from your League activities, too.
OSME, OREGON STUDENT MOCK ELECTIONS
Coming to a school near you!
The 2022 Oregon Student Mock Election Day will be October 18th, with ballot choices from Oregon’s exciting November 2022 mid-term elections. We are so grateful to the Oregon Department of Education, long-time OSME friends, for forwarding information to Oregon educators. The League will provide Mock Election Tool Kits including a Google Form to tabulate results. We will share the Mock Election results with schools and the press! If you are available to drop off Voters’ Guides at your local school in October, please email Diana DeMaria.
Teachers Love the Oregon Student Mock Elections:
∙ “The students felt like they were part of something bigger than just a classroom activity
or assignment. They felt it was important. They felt like they had a voice, one of the most important aspects of being a citizen.”
∙ “Well done Mock Election. I feel it is very important to model our democratic system to our youth. We can hope that by giving them a "feel" for the importance of voting and having their individual voice heard as a young person that they will continue that lesson into their adult life.”
Everyone CAN HELP!
Click on Student Mock Elections with Civics ED curriculum for more information to talk to students you know and their teachers! They may not be aware that an Oregon law passed in early 2015 lowered the Oregon voter registration age to 16! Oregon’s voter registration deadline is 21 days before election day, on October 18th, 2022 for this year's mid-term elections. Voter registration criteria are:
Be a United States citizen
Be a resident of Oregon
Be at least 16 years old to become eligible to receive your first ballot in the mail when you are at least 18 years old.
SPEAKERS' BUREAU - A STRONG VOTER SERVICE
Contact your own League to pitch in and help, close to home and for the state! Your needs may vary but you can help! Our local Leagues have a legacy of providing speakers as a public service to help explain state ballot measures. LWVOR ballot measure researchers are analyzing this fall’s four state measures for our Voters’ Guides and the 2022 Speakers’ Bureau, for public presentations. The Speakers’ Bureau Handbook will be available with everything members need to know to make the 2022 presentations.
My home League in Lane County knows that League members’ families, neighbors, friends, and community groups all count on us to help them be well-informed! Lane asks all members to attend the Speakers’ Bureau orientation. You can also help by following ongoing press coverage to update our Speakers’ Bureau up to the November 8th election. For info, email Peggy Bengry, LWVOR Voter Service Chair.
ACTION - OREGON BALLOT MEASURES 2022
Contact your own League to pitch in and help, close to home and for the state! Your needs may vary but you can help with collecting candidate and local ballot measure data for Vote411.org. The Lane County League decided a few years ago that since everyone depends on League members for voting information, they offered Speakers’ Bureau training to ALL MEMBERS!
These four measures will be on all Oregon ballots this November and this is where the League stands (our positions). The League studies issues, reaches member consensus, and then we adopt positions. Read About Our Positions! We refrain from supporting or opposing measures if we have not studied the issue. The board voted to accept the Action Committee recommendation for these:
#111 Oregon Right to Health Care Amendment - SUPPORT Legislative Referral 111 (read the text) Amend the Oregon Constitution: the State must ensure affordable healthcare access, balanced against requirements to fund schools and other essential services.
#112 Remove Slavery and Crimes from the Oregon Constitution - SUPPORT Legislative Referral 112 (read the text) Amend the Oregon Constitution: Remove language allowing slavery and involuntary servitude as punishment for crime. This legislative referral applies to prisoners working without getting paid.
#113 Oregon exclusion from re-election for absenteeism. [no position] Ballot Measure 113 (read the measure) Amend the Oregon Constitution: Disqualify Legislators with ten unexcused absences from floor sessions from holding the next term of office.
#114 The Reduction of Gun Violence Act - SUPPORT Ballot Measure 114 (read the measure) Requires permit to acquire firearms; police maintain permit/firearm database; criminally prohibits certain ammunition magazines.
LWVOR has purchased space in the state Voters’ Pamphlet to enter a statement of support, including, for the first time, sending the statement in Spanish, with thanks to our translators, Cross Cultural Now, for translating quickly to address the Secretary of State rules notice, with a next day deadline.
The League will also be listed on this list as a supporter for Measure 114, which may be the only gun safety measure on November 2022 ballots around the country.
The organizations and leaders you know and trust support YES on Measure 114
United States Senator Jeff Merkley
Lift Every Voice, Oregon
Oregon Nurses Association
Oregon Medical Association
Stand for Children
American Federation of Teachers (AFT-Oregon)
League of Women Voters of Oregon
Family Forward Oregon
Oregon Chapter of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America
Lift Every Voice Oregon
Oregon Alliance for Gun Safety
Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence
Everytown for Gun Safety Action Fund
Former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords
Consolidated Oregon Indivisible Network (COIN)
Ecumenical Ministries of Oregon
Oregon Board of Rabbis
Oregon Coalition for Christian Voices
Oregon Unitarian Universalist Voices for Justice
Zen Community of Oregon
Imam Abdullah Polovina
Congregation Beth Israel
Augustana Lutheran Church
Rev. LeRoy Haynes Jr., Pastor Allen Temple CME
Oregon High School Democrats
Oregon Academy of Family Physicians
Oregon Pediatric Society
Oregon Chapter of the American College of Emergency Physicians
Oregon Chapter of the American College of Cardiology
Oregon Chapter American College of Surgeons
Oregon Psychiatric Physicians Association
Osteopathic Physicians and Surgeons of Oregon
American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists
Oregon Society of Physician Assistants
Oregon Physicians for Social Responsibility
Plus hundreds of religious leaders, hunters, gun owners, District Attorneys, police chiefs, military veterans, and many, many more…
Find a full list of supporters and get your questions answered at VoteYesOn114.org
Last month we included this request for data processing volunteers and it inspired us to start revamping our website! We will start listing Volunteer Opportunities, short-term, committee openings, etc. This is a work in progress and we expect it to be constantly changing! For example, Congratulations to Voter Service Chair, Peggy Bengry, for recruiting researchers for the four state ballot measures! Thank you, the positions have been filled!
Meanwhile, help is still needed:
The LWVOR is part of and is a leader of the People Not Politicians coalition. You may already know that PNP is planning to refile its redistricting initiative for 2024. We need volunteers to help add signers of the previous redistricting initiative petitions to a database that can then be used for mailing new petitions and other purposes. You can do this volunteer work from home using your home computer and a website. Very little computer skill is needed for this work, and you may do the work as you have time available. If you want to help, please contact Chris Cobey or Norman Turrill.
COLUMBIA RIVER TREATY LETTER
Did you know that the state Leagues from Oregon, Washington, Idaho and Montana have been working together since 2013 to influence cooperation on Columbia River issues?
We have just confirmed another joint letter, sent to officials in the US State Dept., the Bonneville Power Administration, the Chief Negotiator for the Columbia River Treaty, and the Commander of the Portland District, US Army Corps of Engineers.
Here's the first paragraph:
The Columbia River is one of the most important trans-boundary rivers in the world. Although the river has been heavily developed for hydropower and flood management, including by dams built pursuant to the U.S.-Canada Columbia River Treaty, it still functions as a single system, within a single watershed. The League of Women Voters of Oregon, along with the Leagues of Washington, Idaho and Montana, adopted a position on the Columbia River Basin in 1979: “In order to meet the present and future water needs within the Columbia River Basin, the League of Women Voters believes comprehensive planning on a basin-wide basis for conservation, development, and management of the water is essential to the optimum utilization of our water resources.”
LWVOR TASK FORCE - NOMINATING COMMITTEE
The Task Force we began at the LWVOR Council, to address shared nominating committee concerns, has not met since our last newsletter. In some ways, August was a good time to take a breath! We do want to share leadership recruitment and membership, the value of our MLD Committee, and look forward to news from this group soon. Watch for an invitation and send your Nominating Committee and Membership folks to join this group.
For readers of American History, the death of David McCullough in august deserves a nod of appreciation for his accomplishments, including two Pulitzer prizes.
Read through this homage from The Post and consider which of these you might like to put on your reading list. David McCullough, master chronicler of American history, dies at 89, The Washington Post, August 8, 2022.
Thank you for reading the state League update. Thank you for being informed, and here’s to doing what we can for these issues we care so deeply about! Our strength is in working together and I am so very grateful that there are so many of us pitching in to help. Thank You!
Thank you for reading this newsletter!
You can Manage Your LWVOR Subscriptions yourself for this monthly President’s Newsletter, the Legislative Reports, and the quarterly VOTER.