Wednesday, July 17th is LWVMA Lobby Day for Election Reform

Please plan to join with our coalition partners in a Lobby Day at the State House Wednesday, July 17, in Nurses Hall to ask your legislators to support laws modernizing the way Massachusetts handles voter registration and elections, in particular the omnibus election reform bill, S.327.

Among the key provisions of this bill are early voting, an online site for voters to check their registration status and polling place, online voter registration, and random audits of polling places.

Election reform legislation almost passed last year; we need to make sure it succeeds this year!

Visit www.lwvma.org for more information.

Take the League Out to the Ball Game!

The Boston Red Sox are celebrating Women’s Equality Day with a League of Women Voters Night at Fenway Park!  It’s Wednesday, August 28, at 7:10 p.m. when the Sox play the Baltimore Orioles at Fenway Park.

 There’s a special ticket rate for this event–bleacher seats for $28 and covered outfield grandstand for $30. The Red Sox will reserve a section for Leaguers and their friends to sit together.  A portion of the ticket sales will be donated to LWVMA, and LWVMA will be donating some tickets to Girl Scout troops. The deadline to order tickets and for LWVMA to receive your payment is Friday, August 9. Click here for information and to order tickets. 

Response and Discussion on the recent Supreme Court decision on the Voting Rights Act (VRA)

LWVUS President Elizabeth MacNamara wrote in her recent Leaders’ Update:

As pleased as we were with the Supreme Court’s ruling in Arizona v. ITCA last week, we are equally disappointed with the Court’s holding in Shelby County, AL v. Holder. By cutting the heart out of the Voting Rights Act, the Court has weakened our ability to keep our elections free, fair and accessible to every eligible voter while at the same time emboldening those who seek to create barriers to voting.

Already, states formerly subject to Section 5 preclearance are rushing to implement voter photo ID laws and discriminatory redistricting plans. The fight to protect the vote now involves not just the state legislatures, but Congress as well. Here at the LWVUS, we will be evaluating all our options, but it is important that League members take every opportunity to remind their members of Congress that voting rights are not a partisan issue and equal opportunity to participate in the greatest democracy in the world deserves the same bipartisan support that it has had since 1965.We have many tools available to us, as League leaders, to engage our members and our communities such as social media and email blasts, websites and newsletters. We need to create a national groundswell of support for protecting the right to vote.  

The Shelby County decision places the Supreme Court on the wrong side of history and it is up to us, as voters, to make sure that the decision is only another bump in the long road to fair and equal access to the polls. In the end, our fight to protect voters is always going to depend on voters getting informed and informing their elected officials that voting is the most precious right the Constitution guarantees.

With renewed conviction, let’s get out there and power our voices to power the vote in 2013, 2014 and beyond.

For more information, check out the article on the LWV national website regarding the VRA decision by clicking here.  On Point, by WBUR, also had an interesting discussion of the VRA from a southern perspective:  On Point. And Atlantic Cities also just came out with analysis.

 

 

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