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" style="float:left; margin: 2px 8px 2px 0 The Alabama Voter 
Summer 2010 Edition
Published July 19, 2010

Convention Resolutions Make Forceful Statements of LWV Concerns


One way of calling attention to concerns of immediate significance is for the Delegates assembled in national convention to adopt resolutions. One of special interest to the Alabama delegation related to the Gulf oil gusher. It was introduced by the Dane County, WI, League. Mary Lynn Bates added a strong amendment, and the amended resolution passed unanimously. It will be the basis of a public statement by the LWVUS, which may have appeared by the time this VOTER reaches you. Its content in full is as follows:

Motion to move the Emergency Resolution of Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill: Therefore, we request that the LWVUS highlight the need for those responsible for the oil spill to be held accountable. Further, the LWVUS demands that our government hold those responsible for the environmental disaster accountable for the clean-up. The LWVUS further urges the legislative and executive branches of the federal government to immediately take all necessary steps to maximize to the extent practicable the ability and efforts of all relevant federal agencies and departments to take action, and to work with the U.S. coastal states and communities most directly and immediately affected, to respond creatively, efficiently and effectively to the environmental, health and economic crisis created by the oil flowing from the out of control BP oil well in the Gulf of Mexico and by the efforts to contain and disperse it.

The other resolutions adopted, their source and disposition, are these:

The following motion was ruled out of order, that ruling overruled on a card vote, and then adopted by the convention --

Resolved that the LWVUS support lifting the travel restrictions for Americans going to Cuba.

-- LWV Florida

Resolved that we, representatives at the 2010 National Convention of the League of Women Voters, call upon the Board to use the resources of the League to support and lobby for significant strengthening of appropriate regulation, oversight, inspection, and penalties associated with the development of fossil fuel resources. This strengthening should include elimination from national legislation of the exemptions for drilling and mining, as well as additional legislation requiring the federal agencies to regulate drilling and mining in a manner consistent with the preservation of a healthy environment. We also call on the Board to communicate with the President and the Congress putting them on notice that Leagues across the country are deeply concerned about this issue.

-- LWV of Tompkins County, NY.

Resolved that the League of Women Voters call upon the Senate to change its rules to limit the use of the filibuster.

-- LWV of Kalamazoo Area, MI.

Addition of the principle of TRANSPARENCY to the SARA Resolution, as adopted by the LWVC Biennial Convention on May 17, 2009. Revised to include the following Principles: Security; Accuracy; Recountability; Accessibility; and Transparency.

-- LWV of Monterey Peninsula, CA.

Resolved that we, the representatives of local and state Leagues assembled at the 2010 LWLVUS Convention, call upon the LWVUS Board to advocate strongly for bills that legislate for improved Medicare for all.

-- LWV of Bloomington-Monroe, IN.

The resolution process was also used to adopt several concurrences, as follows:

Concurrence with the LWVMD & LWVME position on Marriage Equality to be added to the Equality of Opportunity position--

The League of Women Voters of the United States supports equal rights for all under state and federal law. LWVUS supports legislation to equalize the legal rights, obligations, and benefits available to same-gender couples with those available to heterosexual couples. LWVUS supports legislation to permit same-gender couples to marry under civil law. The League believes that the civil status of marriage is already clearly distinguished from the religious institution of marriage and that religious rights will be preserved.

-- LWV of Saratoga County, NY.

Concurrence, that the following words be added as the third sentence to the LWVUS position on selection of the president --

We support the use of the National Popular Vote Compact as one acceptable way to achieve the goal of the direct popular vote for election of the president until the abolition of the Electoral College is accomplished

-- LWV of Arizona.

Both concurrences sparked considerable debate. One concern about the equality of marriage statement was the last sentence, but the accepted explanation was that the LWV supports civil unions and believes the right of any religious group to refuse to perform ceremonies in violation of its beliefs must be preserved. There was some question as to whether the National Popular Vote movement was an attempt to sidestep the Constitution or to weaken the League’s long-time effort to abolish the Electoral College. It was finally agreed that the NPV plan, which is to give all electoral votes of the states in the NPV Compact to the winner of the national popular vote, would be an interim measure in force until the Electoral College is abolished, and that the Constitution only establishes the Electoral College, leaving to the states to determine how their electoral votes are to be counted.

A concurrence recommended by the National Board and adopted without opposition involved minor amendments to our arms control position, mainly by adding stronger statements about control of materials, proliferation, and monitoring and environmental concerns. The entire lengthy statement may be found on the LWVUS website.

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