LWVMD Hosts Gerrymandering for Beginner Webinar Series asking Marylanders “What Does Your Gerrymander Look Like?”

Press Release: September 19, 2018

Annapolis – The League of Women Voters Maryland (LWVMD) has launched an educational campaign on gerrymandering in light of the clock running down on the “redistricting countdown.” The campaign has begun with a series of 7 webinars entitled “Gerrymandering for Beginners – How to Make Every Vote Count in Maryland”. These webinars – running weekly from now until October 23rd – are free and open to the public - https://www.lwvmd.org/gerrymandering_for_beginners_events The events are being led by LWVMD Redistricting Advocate, Ashley Oleson. Oleson also serves on Maryland’s Redistricting Reform Commission appointed by the governor to study the issue and make recommendations on a new redistricting process for the state.

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Activists Gather in Maryland's 6th District to Raise Awareness of Need to End Gerrymandering in MD

07/15/18 – Frederick, MD – On Sunday, the Tame the Gerrymander coalition hosted over 50 activists and more passersby in Maryland’s 6th Congressional District, the subject of the recent Supreme Court case Benisek v. Lamone. Activists gathered at the Carroll Creek Amphitheater for their mock celebration for the birthday of Elbridge Gerry, the namesake of the term gerrymandering.  The event included gerrymandering-themed birthday games, speakers, as well as an Elbridge Gerry impersonator in a dunk booth.

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LWVMD Voter’s Guide Informs over 250,000 Marylanders

For Immediate Release

Monday, July 2, 2018 – The League of Women Voters of Maryland (LWVMD) provided candidate information to more than a quarter million Marylanders in advance of the June 26 primary election. This included 188,000 copies of the Voter’s Guide printed by local Leagues, over 10,000 views of those Guides on the LWVMD website, and more than 53,000 users of the interactive online version of the guide at Vote411.org. This represents more than 30% of the votes cast for all candidates for Governor.

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LWVMD Statement on MVA Voter Registration Error

Press Statement - For Immediate Release

Tuesday, June 26, 2018 – The failure of the Motor Vehicle Administration to forward to the Board of Elections information on nearly 80,000 voters is of grave concern to the League of Women Voters.  A citizen’s right to vote is too important to be put at risk by administrative error.  We call on the Governor and Maryland General Assembly to thoroughly investigate this matter, determine the causes, and take the necessary steps to prevent it from happening again.

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LWVMD’s Online Voter’s Guide Is Live for Maryland’s 6/26 Primaries!

 

Press Release – LWVMD’s Online Voter’s Guide Is Live for Maryland’s 6/26 Primaries!

May 11, 2018 - For Immediate Release

The online Voters’ Guide from the League of Women Voters (LWVMD) is now available at www.vote411.org.  Candidates for every office in every county in Maryland were asked to respond to questions relating to the duties of the office they are seeking and also to list their websites and social media pages.  More than 1,500 candidates responded to LWVMD’s questions.

The VOTE411 website allows voters to type in their addresses and then displays the candidates who will appear on the ballot in their precinct.  VOTE411 also lists LWVMD-sponsored candidate forums throughout Maryland.  From VOTE411, the voter can access the Maryland State Board of Elections website to request an absentee ballot or update their voter registration information, either to change party affiliation or provide a new address.

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4 Reasons to Watch a Candidate Forum

The League of Women Voters has a long history of hosting nonpartisan candidate forums and educating the American people. Every election season, Leagues across the county hold hundreds of candidate debates and forums to help voters learn about the candidates on their ballot. Attending or watching a candidate debate is one of the best ways to prepare for casting your ballot. As a core feature of U.S. politics, candidate debates help voters learn more about a candidate and his or her stance on key issues. What’s more, debates can be fun. Here’s why you should attend a local candidate debate! 

***Excerpt taken from LWV.org post found here

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Almost End of Session Report

As of April 5, we have had some wins or near wins and some losses in our legislative priorities.

Under Making Democracy Work, HB 356 for a Redistricting Commission received an unfavorable report as did HB 1022 which would have established standards for Congressional districts. However, HB 532 the Constitutional Amendment to allow registration and voting on Election Day did pass both houses. It will be on the ballot on November 6. The Secure and Accessible Registration Act (SARA), SB 1048, which provides for automatic voter registration or updating when people apply at certain state agencies, has passed both houses but has not been signed by the Governor.

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Maryland Reform Groups Rally at Supreme Court Ahead of Redistricting Hearing

 

 

PRESS RELEASE: March 28th, 2018


Maryland Reform Groups Rally at Supreme Court Ahead of Redistricting Hearing

The League of Women Voters Maryland, Common Cause Maryland, and Represent Maryland Call on the Court to Tame the Gerrymander


This morning, a coalition of organizations including Common Cause Maryland, the League of Women Voters Maryland, and Represent Maryland gathered with activists on the Supreme Court steps to draw attention to the Court’s hearing of Benisek v. Lamone.  The case, one of many cases before federal courts this year related to redistricting, challenges Maryland’s 2012 map that advocates argue was unconstitutionally gerrymandered.

“Voters should choose their representatives, not the other way around,” said Cristi Demnowiz, of Represent Maryland, “But with Maryland being one of the most gerrymandered states in the nation, that’s not the case.”

 

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MD Senate and House Pass Strong Voter Registrations Reforms Senate passes Automatic Voter Registration and House passes Election Day Registration

March 16, 2018 - Today, the Maryland State Senate passed SB1048, the Secure and Accessible Registration Act, a form of Automatic Voter Registration (AVR) with a vote of 32-12. It now moves on to the House.

“In conjunction, these bills work to streamline our voter registration process, so more Marylanders can exercise their right to vote,” explained Senator Will Smith, the lead sponsor of SB1048 and a cosponsor of Election Day Registration.

Last week the House passed HB532, Election Day Registration, with a vote of 91-47. In order to establish Election Day Registration, the General Assembly needs to amend the Maryland constitution. Once passed by the Senate, it will be up to voters to authorize the amendment at the ballot in November.

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LWVMD’s Focus on Juvenile Rehabilitation is an Evidence-Based Solution

“How could a judge turn you into something that you’re not?” was the question that Bryan Stevenson asked himself. In his widely acclaimed Ted Talk, “We Need to Talk About an Injustice”, Stevenson recounts his consternation and exhaustion as he stands before his fourteen year old client, clearly a child, and wonders at the “magic power” the judge has used to turn this child into an adult in his courtroom. Stevenson goes on to describe how, in an effort to grab some of that “magic power” for himself, he files a motion to try his “poor 14 year old black male client like a privileged, white, 75 year old corporate executive.”

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