By Ruth Kistler
The League of Women Voters has a non-partisan policy; we never support or oppose political parties or candidates for elective office. We do take positions on issues, and we may support or oppose proposed legislation or other governmental actions based on our positions. On the other hand, we cannot advocate on an issue if we have no position on which to base that advocacy. Some examples of advocacy are lobbying at the legislature, campaigning for or against a ballot measure, influencing rule making, or sponsoring events to arouse public awareness.
LWV Lincoln County positions are included in this newsletter. (We have not adopted or modified
our positions for several years.) State positions can be found on the LWVOR website in the “Issues for Action” document. National positions can be found on the LWV website in the “Impact on Issues”. (Go to https://www.lwv.org/impact-issues.) Both these documents contain not only the positions, but also the League’s history and action with respect to these positions. Having so many positions available, it is important for us to prioritize our advocacy by choosing issues of greatest importance to our community, perhaps also choosing those where we think our actions can make the greatest difference. If we are confronted with an important issue on which we have no position, we need to consider whether it might be appropriate for the League to try to develop a relevant position.
I am not aware of any member who is enthusiastic about the traditional January Program planning activity – going through all the local and state positions and designating each as “retain”, “drop” “update” or “restudy”-- , so we won’t do that. For our January 19 member meeting, Ruth Kistler will present the steps in the LWVOR process of adopting a position starting from the proposal of a study. We’ll talk about the studies likely to be proposed at the next LWVOR Convention. We
will also consider whether our League would like to engage in advocacy on any current local issues based on our available positions.