Serving the people of Southeast Alaska

LWVJ Blog2020-07-11T08:47:11-09:00

The LWVJ Blog

Features action alerts and articles by our members and others.  Renewed and refreshed for 2020.

More on Alaska Ballot Measure 2

More about Alaska Ballot Measure 2,Top-Four Ranked-Choice Voting and Campaign Finance Laws Initiative (2020)

Supported by the LWV-AK.  Need more information on why this Ballot measure is so long?  It contains all of the language and information that will have to be changed in legislation in order to comply.  This is a good thing, as it makes things very transparent and clear and will result in better legislation.

SECTIONAL SUMMARY OF 19AKBE

*Section 1 […]

October 15th, 2020|Categories: Alaska, Vote2020|

Why Should I Vote?

According to a recent study, these are the top reasons people don’t vote (and some reasons to help change their minds): 

  • Don’t like the candidates
    • Nobody is perfect, and no candidate is either.  Find the candidate and the party that – in total – come closest to your ideals.   
  • My vote doesn’t matter
    • Read the following examples where a few votes can made all the difference!  It really does matter.
  • No time for voting
      […]
October 5th, 2020|Categories: Vote2020|

Voting 2020: General Election Ballot Initiative 1

Alaska Ballot Measure 1, North Slope Oil Production Tax Increase Initiative (2020)

An Act changing the oil and gas production tax for certain fields, units, and nonunitized reservoirs on the North Slope
This act would change the oil and gas production tax for areas of the North Slope where a company produced more than 40,000 barrels of oil per day in the prior year and more than 400 million barrels total. The new areas would be divided up […]

October 2nd, 2020|Categories: Vote2020|

Voting 2020: Alaska Ballot Measure 2

Alaska Ballot Measure 2, Top-Four Ranked-Choice Voting and Campaign Finance Laws Initiative (2020)

Note:  The League of Women Voters of Alaska is supporting this Ballot Measure.

An Act Replacing the Political Party Primary with an Open Primary System and Ranked-Choice General Election, and Requiring Additional Campaign Finance Disclosures

This act would get rid of the party primary system, and political parties would no longer select their candidates to appear on the general election ballot. Instead, this act […]

October 2nd, 2020|Categories: Vote2020|

Voting 2020: 3 Steps to take to ensure your voice is heard!

1.  Register

Check your registration and address
In 2016, Alaska voters approved a law which automatically registers or updates voter registration information using the information from the Permanent Fund Dividend (PFD) unless the applicant opts-out.

As every year, all Alaskan registered voters can vote Absentee by mail by requesting a ballot for the State House and General Elections.But you must request a ballot.

Alaska residents who will turn 18 within 90 days of the election are eligible to vote – […]

October 2nd, 2020|Categories: Vote2020|

19thAmendment

Before and After the Nineteenth Amendment

August 2020 marks several landmarks in the long struggle for voting rights for women.  August 18, 1920 saw the ratification of the Nineteenth Amendment to the Constitution by the state legislature of Tennessee, and on August 26, 1920 the amendment was officially added to our Constitution and meant that women who were U.S. citizens had the right to vote in all states of the Union. Neither of these events […]

September 10th, 2020|Categories: Alaska, ERA|

Alyse Galvin

Alyse Galvin, Non-partisan, running in the Democratic Primary

Website: ALYSEFORALASKA.COM

Biographical Information: I am a third-generation Alaskan. Like too many children, I grew up in a home with trauma and abuse, but my community and local public school in the Anchorage Government Hill neighborhood lifted me up and gave me the tools and confidence I needed to persevere. I was the first in my family to graduate from college, earning a degree in political science from UCSD. I […]

August 2nd, 2020|Categories: Alaska, Candidate, House|

Dr. Al Gross

Al Gross, Non-partisan, running in the Democratic Primary

Website: DRALGROSSAK.COM

Biographical Information: Born and raised in Alaska; father Avrum Gross was Attorney General under Governor Hammond; Al is an orthopedic surgeon; his wife Monica is a pediatrician; Al has commercial fished; panned for gold; founded the Juneau Bone and Joint Center, served as President of the Bartlett Regional Hospital medical staff.

Responses to Voter’s Guide Questions:

1.The Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) to the Constitution was passed by Congress […]

July 31st, 2020|Categories: Alaska, Candidate, Senate|

Dan Sullivan

Dan Sullivan, Incumbent, Republican running in the Republican Primary

Website: DANSULLIVANFORALASKA.COM

Responses to Voter’s Guide Questions: Did not respond to a request for comments

Biographical Information: Dan Sullivan was elected in 2014 and sworn in as Alaska’s eighth United States Senator on January 6, 2015. Recognized as one of the Senate’s most effective lawmakers, Sullivan serves on committees critical to Alaska: Armed Services, Commerce, Veterans Affairs, and Environment and Public Works. Senator Sullivan has a distinguished record of military and national security […]

July 29th, 2020|Categories: Alaska, Candidate, Senate|

Don Young

Don Young, Incumbent, Republican running in the Republican Primary

Website: ALASKANSFORDONYOUNG.COM

Biographical Information: Congressman Don Young was re-elected to the 116th Congress in 2018 to serve his 24th term as Alaska’s sole Member to the United States House of Representatives. First sworn in during the 93rd Congress after winning a special election, Congressman Young is today the Dean of the House and the longest serving Member of the entire Congress. As the most senior Member, Congressman Young has […]

July 25th, 2020|Categories: Alaska, Candidate, House|

VRAA OpEd by League of Women Voters of Alaska

League of Women Voters of Alaska

February 13, 2020

Dear Editor,

The League of Women Voters is in the process of celebrating the 100th anniversary of the passage of the 19th Amendment, a Constitutional Amendment that gave the right to vote to all citizens of the United States regardless of sex. The Amendment passed Congress in 1919 and was ratified on August 18, 1920. The LWV was organized at the same time to foster informed voting. The simple act […]

July 13th, 2020|Categories: Alaska, VRAA|

Senator Murkowski’s VRAA Press Release

02.12.20

Murkowski Supports Legislation to Restore Voting Rights Act

U.S. Senator Lisa Murkowski announced she is co-sponsoring S. 561, the Voting Rights Advancement Act, as the lead Republican on the bill. Sponsored by Senator Patrick Leahy (D-VT), the legislation improves certain provisions of the original, bipartisan Voting Rights Act of 1965, which were determined to be unconstitutional by the Supreme Court in 2013. Murkowski co-sponsored this same legislation in both the 115th and 114th […]

July 10th, 2020|Categories: Alaska, VRAA|

The ERA – History

EQUAL RIGHTS AMENDMENT (ERA)

Some History: The first version of the Equal Rights Amendment was submitted to Congress in 1923, three years after the passage of the 19th Amendment, which gave women the right to vote. The current ERA was passed in Congress in 1972, followed swiftly by 35 state ratifications for the ERA. Alaska was one of the first states to ratify the amendment in 1972. Then a lawyer named Phyllis Schafly started […]

July 10th, 2020|Categories: Alaska, ERA|

ERA Coalition Information

ERA COALITION

1875 K Street,FL 4, Washington, DC 20006 www.eracoalition.org

History of the Equal Rights Amendment

Alice Paul drafted and introduced the first Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) in 1923, at a conference to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the Seneca Falls Convention. She was a Republican and one of the founders of the National Woman’s Party, which worked for the passage of the Nineteenth Amendment granting women the right to vote. After […]

July 9th, 2020|Categories: Alaska, ERA|

LWVUS Equal Rights Amendment Info

League of Women Voters of the United States: The Equal Rights Amendment (ERA)


HISTORY and PROCESS


LWVUS has supported and pushed for ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment since it was first passed by Congress in 1972. Leagues across the country have worked to engage lawmakers and organize at the grassroots level to ensure equal rights for all, regardless of sex. On January 27, 2020, Virginia became the 38th state to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment.

Talking […]

July 9th, 2020|Categories: Alaska, ERA|

VRAA History

Voting Rights Advancement Act (VRAA)

Some History: In 1965 Congress passed the Voting Rights Act, which protected a citizen’s right to vote. If certain states attempted to suppress the vote of certain groups or made voting difficult through general incompetence of those overseeing the voting process, such a state would fall under a preclearance process for any changes that were made going forward to improve the voting experience.
In 2013, the Supreme Court of the United States […]

July 9th, 2020|Categories: Alaska, VRAA|

How will the VRAA work?

The Voting Rights Advancement Act of 2019 responds to current conditions in voting today by restoring the full protections of the original, bipartisan Voting Rights Act of 1965, which was last reauthorized by Congress in 2006, but gutted by the Supreme Court in 2013. • Following the Shelby County decision four years ago, several states passed sweeping voter suppression laws that disproportionately prevent minorities, the elderly, and the youth from voting.

• The bill provides the […]

July 9th, 2020|Categories: Alaska, VRAA|

Equal Rights Amendment Op Ed (ADN)

Written by Bridget Smith of Juneau for the LWVAK
Published in the Anchorage Daily News–July 5, 2020

The League of Women Voters Urges that the Equal Rights Amendment Become the 28th Amendment to the Constitution

Section 1. Equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex.
Section 2. The Congress shall have the power to enforce, by appropriate legislation, the […]

July 8th, 2020|Categories: Alaska, ERA|

The League of Women Voters statement on Black Lives Matter

The League of Women Voters grieves the murders of George Floyd and the countless other Black lives that have been tragically taken at the hands of rogue law enforcement officers who are rarely held fully accountable for their actions.

We also mourn those who have lost their lives or been harmed, mentally or physically, as a result of America’s pervasive culture of anti-blackness. The systems of oppression that have perpetuated the myth of white supremacy in our country must be dismantled […]

July 6th, 2020|Categories: Announcement|

Isn’t it about time to pass the Equal Rights Amendment?

The League of Women Voters Urges that the Equal Rights Amendment Become the 28th Amendment to the Constitution

by Bridget Smith

Section 1. Equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex. 

Section 2. The Congress shall have the power to enforce, by appropriate legislation, the provisions of this article. 

Section 3. This amendment shall take effect two years after the date of ratification.

This is the entire […]

July 6th, 2020|Categories: Advocacy, Member story|

May 2020 Action Alert from LWV-AK

May 16, 2020

League of Women Voters of Alaska–ACTION ALERT

The League of Women Voters of Alaska has received two grants from LWVUS, the national League, to advocate and educate for the following:

1. The Equal Rights Amendment, S. J. Res 6, a bill to remove the deadline date now that the required number of states have ratified this Amendment.

2. The Voting Rights Advancement Act, S. 561, a bill to update the Voting […]

June 1st, 2020|Categories: Archive|

2017 Capitol Currents

  2017 Capitol Currents – last two editions

~ Marching very slowly towards Day 121 and beyond ~

Capitol Currents is a weekly update of happenings at the Alaska State Legislature during session.   There is a lot of great information in these editions,  important links to find more information, lots and lots of information on the budget situation, and new “Bills of Interest.”   Stop by every week and read the latest editions.  Prior editions are here.

[…]

May 3rd, 2017|Categories: Archive|

2017 Action Alert #11

Here is where we are with the Legislature as time runs out:

HB 184: The companion bill for SB 72, antidiscrimination. This is being heard in House State Affairs on Thursday, May 3,3 pm, Rm 120. The bill can be found here: <http://www.akleg.gov/basis/Bill/Text/30?Hsid=HB0184A> Public testimony is not yet scheduled. The bill is being introduced in its first House hearing.

This bill adds “sexual orientation, gender identity, and expression” to the list of protections […]

April 29th, 2017|Categories: Archive|Tags: , , , |

2017 Action Alert #10

I am sending this out because it is most likely the most  important issue that faces citizens of this state at the current time.  The information box below from Great Alaska Schools is well done and explains clearly where the budget is at.  We need to make our voices heard.  The House has completed a major task in HB 115, which would reinstate an income tax.  We need the additional revenue rather than another draw on savings accounts.  The Senate plan […]

April 19th, 2017|Categories: Archive|Tags: , , , , |

2017 Action Alert #8a

If you have been hesitant to email your elected state officials, here is a chance to jump in and get your feet wet.  And remember that once you contact them by email, their email addresses are in your email list and contacting them again will be much easier. You might want to gather together some friends and family and take turns writing emails or have them bring their smart phones or tablets and all write together; the more, the merrier.  Your […]

April 5th, 2017|Categories: Archive|Tags: , , , , |

2017 Action Alert #9

Here is the current status. The Legislature is busy.

HB 44: Ethics Bill dealing with conflicts of interest. The bill passed the House and has been transmitted to the Senate. Keep tuned.

HB 31: Processing sexual assault kits: The bill passed the House and has been transmitted to the Senate. Keep tuned.

HB 111: Oil Tax Credits: Passed out of H RES and on to H FIN.  Bill seems more contentious than expected in the House.

Bills with hearings this week:

SB 72: Anti-discrimination bill to add “sexual orientation, gender […]

April 3rd, 2017|Categories: Archive|Tags: , , , , , |

2017 Action Alert #8

Here is the status of the bills we have been following plus one we might want to follow should there ever be a hearing.

A. SB 72–The following language would be added to the list of protected classes in state ant-discrimination statute: “sexual orientation, gender identity, and expression.” You can send an email of support to [email protected]gov and your own Senator and Representative in support of this bill. LWVUS supports anti-discrimination measures […]

April 2nd, 2017|Categories: Archive|Tags: , , , , , , |

NPV Arguments and Rebuttals

Arguments and statements against the National Popular Vote (NPV) Compact include the following, with the LWV’s rebuttal written by the LWVAK Advocacy Chair, Judy Andree:

      1. “But your votes do count under the current method.” This is not fully true given that the Presidential election is a national election and all votes should count at that national level. Most states use the winner-take-all method of voting their electoral votes. The state majority wins the total number of electoral votes and those […]
March 30th, 2017|Categories: Archive|Tags: , , , |

2017 Action Alert #7

Last week Advocacy Chair, Judy Andree, attended public testimony on HB 175, National Popular Vote Compact.  She followed up with a second letter from LWVAK in response to some of the testimony that opposed the bill with incorrect information.  The letter focused on the history of the League’s involvement with the National Popular Vote as well as brief history of the use of electors and how that has evolved into something not necessarily in the original intent.  LWVUS has supported […]

March 27th, 2017|Categories: Archive|Tags: , , , , |

2017 Action Alert #6

SB 72: DISCRIMINATION: GENDER ID.;SEXUAL ORIENTATION. Sponsor: Senator Gardner

“An Act adding to the powers and duties of the State Commission for Human Rights; and relating to and prohibiting discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity or expression.”

There are no current hearings scheduled. The bill was referred to HSS, JUD, and FIN and currently resides in HSS. This bill was also introduced during […]

March 20th, 2017|Categories: Archive|Tags: , , , , |

2017 Action Alert #5

HB 44 (Ethics), HB 25 (insurance coverage for contraceptives, HB 115 (budget fix with income tax, PF restructuring)–No further hearings scheduled as of yet.  HB 31, sexual assault kit handling & database, has been advanced to House Finance.

Two bills that concern money for school funding  might be of interest and worth watching, particularly if nothing is done to raise revenue for the state.

  • HB 146: 
March 14th, 2017|Categories: Archive|

2017 Annual Meeting Materials

Below is the Juneau Voter for the upcoming Annual meeting which will be held March 25, 2017 in the Assembly Chambers.  In this edition of the Juneau Voter, there is the Nominating Committee slate of candidates for the 2017-2018 Board of Directors.  Members will be asked to vote on these candidates on the 25th.
Also in this Voter, you’ll find an explanation of the League’s interest in moving to a 501(c)3 organization.  We believe that this will be the right move for […]
March 12th, 2017|Categories: Archive|

2017 Action Alert #4

NOTE: AN EMAIL NEEDS TO BE ONLY 2-3 SENTENCES LONG (UNLESS YOU HAVE MORE TO SAY).  BUT THOSE 2-3 SENTENCES ARE IMPORTANT BECAUSE THEY SHOW YOUR SUPPORT FOR A BILL OR CERTAIN ASPECTS OF A BILL.  SO LET YOUR VOICES BE HEARD!

Great Alaska Schools Rejuvenation Meeting – Saturday, March 11  10:00-11:30 Mendenhall Valley Library Conference Room. 

March 6th, 2017|Categories: Archive|Tags: , , , , , |

2017 Action Alert #3

To all LWV of Alaska members – please make your voices heard.

1. HB 25–Support emails are needed for HB 25–INSURANCE COVERAGE FOR CONTRACEPTIVES. Sponsor Representative Claman, Representative Spohnholz. The text of the bill can be found here: http://www.legis.state.ak.us/PDF/30/Bills/HB0025A.PDF.
HB 25 is a mirror bill to one submitted last session by Senator Gardner. It will provide 12-month coverage/refills for birth control and related treatment. The first hearing is to be held on Tuesday, Feb. 28th at 3 pm in […]

February 26th, 2017|Categories: Archive|Tags: , , , , , , |

Capitol Currents Archives

Archive Editions of Capitol Currents for 2017

Capitol Currents is a weekly update of happenings at the Alaska State Legislature during session.   Each week, this article will be updated with the latest edition for you to read and download.  There is a lot of great information in these editions, everything from the list of names of our new legislators, important links to find more information, lots and lots of information on the budget situation, and new “Bills of Interest.”   […]

February 25th, 2017|Categories: Archive|Tags: , , |

Action Alert #2/2017

A. BUDGET: Probably the biggest issue facing the Legislature is the state financial crisis. The HOUSE FINANCE COMMITTEE has submitted a bill calling for an income tax and a refiguring of the Permanent Fund which would save the dividend and allow for budget spending of some of the earnings while placing some of those earning back into the principle so that […]

February 13th, 2017|Categories: Archive|Tags: , , |

Popular Vote 3

Changing the use of the Electoral Vote (EV) in order to give a more representative nod to the total popular vote (PV) would not be easy. Awarding electoral votes (EV’s) based on a proportion of the popular vote (PV) in each state is a possibility for a more accurate representation.  There are two methods by which the use of the EV could be overridden completely: amending the U. S. Constitution or adopting the National Popular Vote (NPV) compact.  There are […]

February 5th, 2017|Categories: Advocacy, Archive, Election Laws|Tags: , , |

Anxiety–January 30, 2017

Author: Barbara Belknap

There is a lot of angst out there over the election. My Facebook page is overflowing with comments, suggestions, and the sharing of emotions from American women. There is commiseration from my friends in the United Kingdom, and I even got a note from Africa.

February 1st, 2017|Categories: Archive, Member story|Tags: , |

Why I am Going to the Women’s March in DC

On January 13 I decided to reroute my ticket on a previously planned trip to New Orleans and the East Coast so that I could participate in the Women’s March on Washington on January 21.  It was almost a spur of the moment thing – but on reflection I realized that over the past several weeks I had been building up quite a head of steam that now forced me to stand up for democracy and civil rights.

I discovered through social media […]

January 21st, 2017|Categories: Archive, Member story|Tags: , |

Contacting Your Federal Representatives

This post is the second in a series designed to give readers tools to begin becoming effective advocates for policy direction at the local, federal, and state level. This post focuses on the federal level.

Generally, the process boils down to a few stages. However, the details of each process at the local, state, and federal level are quite different.  Nonetheless, those who want to be effective advocates must master each of the following topics.

  1. How the legislative process works;
  2. Who your legislators are and the part they and […]
January 17th, 2017|Categories: Advocacy, Archive, Member Info|Tags: , , |

Tracking and Impacting AK Legislation

This post is the first in a series designed to give readers a few tools to begin becoming effective advocates for policy direction at the local, federal, and state level. This post focuses on the state level.

Generally, the process boils down to a few stages. However, the details of each process at the local, state, and federal level are quite different.  Nonetheless, those who want to be effective advocates must master each of the following topics.

  1. How the legislative process works;
  2. Who your legislators are and the […]
January 12th, 2017|Categories: Advocacy, Archive, Member Info|Tags: , , |

Popular Vote 2

In the blog Popular Vote 1, three questions were proposed, and the attempt to answer those questions can be found in the following blog.

ONE:  Why do we have the Electoral College rather than a popular vote determining the winners of the Presidential elections?  The writers of the Constitution struggled with the problem of electing a President and Vice-President. What they ended up with, after many votes on a variety of options, gave four basic notions on what was […]

January 7th, 2017|Categories: Archive, Election Laws|Tags: , |

Democracy Requires Transparency

The recent election has raised the issue of transparency in government to a high priority. What is government transparency – and why does it matter?

Transparency measures the amount of openness, accountability, and integrity of a government entity. Without transparency, corruption can easily, and usually will, flourish.  “Governments exist to serve the people. Information on how officials conduct the public’s business and spend taxpayers’ money must be readily available and easily understood. This transparency allows good and just governance.”  (see

January 4th, 2017|Categories: Advocacy, Archive, Corruption|Tags: , , , |

Popular Vote 1

In the aftermath of the 2016 election, much talk has occurred on social media and elsewhere about the popular vote.  The discussion has revolved around the fact that the losing candidate won the popular vote by more than 2.8 million votes.  How, people ask, can a candidate win that many more votes and still lose the election?  The confusion is compounded by the fact that for all other elective offices, the winner is the candidate who wins the most votes, […]

December 29th, 2016|Categories: Archive, Election Laws|Tags: , , |

December League Lunch and Learn

On Wednesday, December 14th, in the Baranof Gold room, Josephine Bahnke, Director, Division of Elections spoke on Alaska’s voting systems and processes. With help from Brian Jackson, Program Manager, they discussed the Division’s core mission: to “conduct fair, impartial and accurate elections…”

This year’s election cycle set a record for the number of absentee and early voters. Approximately 32% of the votes cast this year were absentee or early and the trend seems to be one that will […]

December 21st, 2016|Categories: Archive|Tags: , |

Follow Juneau Assembly and School Board actions

This post was contributed by LWVJ members, Pat Watt

Public participation is the glue that holds democracy together.  Democracy is not just about voting – getting registered, learning about what’s on the ballot, and then turning out to cast your ballot. It’s about paying attention to policy matters, issues decided by those we elected, issues that affect our day-to-day existence.  It’s about understanding those policy issues. It’s about making our voices heard. Its about Public Participation.

A lot goes on at the […]

December 17th, 2016|Categories: Advocacy, Archive, Member Info, Program Update|Tags: , , , |

Soccer Moms Attend First LWV Meeting

This Post was contributed by LWVJ member Pat Watt

The LWV Juneau Board has come up with different ways to engage potential members and educate members and the public. Over the past two years we have undertaken several new initiatives.

  • Our second Downtown Lunch and Learn will be held on Wednesday, December 14th, from noon to 1:00pm at the Baranoff.  $17 for the buffet lunch.  Speaker is Josie Bahnke, Director of the AK Division of Elections.
  • Our second Annual “How to Run for Local […]
December 12th, 2016|Categories: Archive, Member Info, Program Update|Tags: , |

Capitol Visits: A Civics Education Initiative

This post is contributed by LWVJ member Marjorie Menzi.

During January-March of 2016, five members of the Juneau LWV introduced 365 students in our school system, and their teachers,  to the legislative, executive, and judicial branches of Alaska’s governmental system. The instructors all had previous teaching experience related to state government.

The Program included:

  • A tour of the Capitol where students met legislators, were introduced on the House or Senate floor, and listened to presentations on the budget;
  • Exposure to […]
December 6th, 2016|Categories: Archive, Program Update|Tags: , , , |

Would YOU like to Blog for the Juneau LWV?

We have populated this Blog initially with articles written as “Points to Ponder” and published as “My Turns” in the Juneau Empire.  We know that we have many members who are good writers and have useful things to say about “How to Make Democracy Work” – especially in this time of change.

If you are interested in writing something meaty and topical on a regular – or irregular – basis we want to hear from you.  We plan on adding new […]

December 6th, 2016|Categories: Announcement, Archive, Member Info|Tags: |

We Have a New Website!

Welcome to the new LWVJ website! We hope this expands accessibility to information about the LWV and makes it easier to find what you are looking for.  We built this website to ensure that all members can keep up-to-date with LWVJ happenings, and to provide non-members with a full understanding of what the LWV is all about.

New features include incorporating our Facebook Feed in the Home Page, so that those who are not Facebook users can still see the information we […]

December 1st, 2016|Categories: Archive|Tags: |

It Takes a Community to Make and Keep a Democracy 

This post is contributed by LWVJ member LaRae Jones.

Various scholars and social scientists remind us that our middle class is eroding, along with our roads, our bridges, harbors, and – most alarmingly – schools. Some see the solution in renewed isolationism that reduces the huge budget drain of foreign wars and arms races. The more down to earth folks at the League of Women Voters adopted national positions on “Meeting Basic Human Needs” in 1971. At that time they cited “Income […]

November 3rd, 2016|Categories: Archive, Empire My Turn|Tags: , , |

Redistricting

This post is contributed by LWVJ member Margo Waring.

The Alaska Constitution requires that the State redraw the lines of legislative districts every ten years, using census data to ensure that each legislative district has the same number of residents as every other district. Each time that redistricting occurs, there is great concern that minorities could lose their voting power and that “safe” districts have been created for members of one party through gerrymandering – the drawing of district lines in shapes […]

October 28th, 2016|Categories: Archive, Empire My Turn|Tags: , |

Elections and Ballots – The Fundamentals of American Democracy

Three ideas are fundamental to the workings of a democracy:

  1. The open and unrestricted access to a secret ballot by all adults.
  2. A ballot secured by competent administration from accidental or purposeful disclosure of a voter’s ballot choices.
  3. The use of a paper balloting system that assures the auditing and accurate hand counting of voting results when those results are challenged.

The non-partisan League of Women Voters has roots in the Women’s Suffrage Movement of the 1920s. The national League […]

October 19th, 2016|Categories: Archive, Election Laws, Empire My Turn|Tags: , , , |

Things To Do To Make Democracy Work

This post is contributed by LWVJ member Ann Fuller.

Let’s make democracy work by improving civics education in our schools and community.  Our future well-being depends on people sensibly cooperating for effective action and engaging in open debate.  Helping students learn to think critically, monitoring school programs,  and including young people in practical democracy are important steps for us to take to improve civics education.

An essential component of good citizenship involves evaluating advertisements, campaign speeches, proposed laws, news reports, and historical explanations.  […]

September 22nd, 2016|Categories: Archive, Empire My Turn|Tags: , , , , |

Non-Partisanship in Local Elections

This post is contributed by LWVJ member Pat Watt.

Our Assembly and School Board members are elected on a nonpartisan basis. Why is that – and does it matter?

State statutes require Alaska’s local governments to adopt rules for conducting local elections – but allow them plenty of flexibility about how they conduct those elections. Juneau’s Municipal Charter, adopted in 1970, provides that all local elections shall be non-partisan. Most municipalities in the state have chosen the same method.

An estimated two thirds of […]

September 13th, 2016|Categories: Archive, Empire My Turn|Tags: , |

Citizen Responsibility

This post is contributed by LWVJ member Judy Andree.

Freedom, patriotism, the Bill of Rights, the Founding Fathers — all rallying cries when talking about politics in the USA. But we don’t hear much talk about our responsibilities as citizens in a free society. Every freedom we enjoy comes with citizen responsibilities.  Here are three points to ponder as we look ahead to both the CBJ and General Elections this fall.

Point One: Get registered to vote as soon as possible. It’s easy, […]

August 30th, 2016|Categories: Archive, Empire My Turn|Tags: , , , |

Photo ID Not Required

This post is contributed by LWVJ member Chris Niemi.

While listening to the radio the day before our primary election, a KINY radio announcer said that picture ID was required to vote.  Shocked, I called the radio station and was told that photo ID would “speed up the process”.  The announcer misinformed the public at least twice while I listened.  On the day of the primary election, the Juneau Empire ran an article “Quiet primary predicted for Juneau”.  The article said in […]

August 30th, 2016|Categories: Archive, Empire My Turn|Tags: , , |

What’s A Girl To Do?

This post is contributed by LWVJ member carolyn Brown.

When I was a kid in early years of learning the saga of U.S. history, I had trouble understanding the meaning, relationship and difference between the words ”suffrage” and “suffering.” They sounded alike to me. Now, these several years later, I find myself similarly troubled to understand these two words in the lexicon of today’s society and challenges.

Suffrage: the right to vote in an election. Suffering: experienced pain, illness, injury, whether physical, psychological […]

August 25th, 2016|Categories: Archive, Empire My Turn|Tags: , , , |
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