Portland LWV Advocates for Public Involvement in Police Oversight

On August 24, LWVPDX Action Chair Debbie Aiona testified before the Portland City Council on the proposed Portland Committee on Community-Engaged Policing (PCCEP). She expressed appreciation for the steps being taken to involve the public in the selection of PCCEP members, while also strongly recommending that all PCCEP meetings be open to the public. Read all of her testimony here.

Congress should improve, not repeal, Obamacare

Senate Republicans introduced yet another health care bill on September 13 in a final effort to repeal Obamacare by using a special budget procedure to advance the legislation with a simple majority by the end of September. League of Women Voters of the U.S. president Chris Carson issued the following statement:

“This last-ditch effort to repeal the Affordable Care Act is more of the same: cuts to Medicare and the loss of health coverage for millions of Americans.

“Senators are, once again, trying to rush through irresponsible legislation before the window closes this month…

“The Affordable Care Act is not a perfect law but it has provided health care to millions of Americans who previously went without coverage.

“It is high time Congress stopped trying to repeal Obamacare and started focusing on ways to improve the law.”

Tell the Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity to Support Voters and Democracy

The freedom to vote is the cornerstone of our democracy. Protecting our voting rights is part of the mission of the League of Women Voters. Politicians should not be putting up barriers that prevent people from voting, purging eligible registered voters and collecting their personal information.

The Commission on Election Integrity met on September 12 in New Hampshire. Reports about the meeting from NH TV stations can be found here and here
Please help us encourage commission members to make voting easier, not more difficult. They should be protecting, not suppressing, the votes of Americans and building trust in our democratic process.
Public comments may be submitted at any time prior to the submission of the Commission’s final report. To submit a comment for future meetings of the Commission, please visit Regulations.gov and click the Comment Now button on the top right portion of the screen. For more information, see lwv.org.

LWV Oregon Stands with Children to Address Climate Change

On September 6, the League of Women Voters of Oregon (LWVOR) joined the League of Women Voters United States (LWVUS) to file an Amicus Curiae Brief in Federal Court in the case of Juliana v. U.S. The press release from LWVOR states, “The Leagues support the 21 young people from across the United States who have filed a landmark constitutional climate change lawsuit against the federal government, via the Eugene, Oregon- based organization, Our Children’s Trust. The complaint asserts that, in causing climate change, the federal government has violated the youngest generation’s constitutional rights to life, liberty, and property, as well as failed to protect essential public trust resources.” Read the entire press release here.

The Impact of Oregon Fires

We are saddened by the effects of the Columbia Gorge fires and other Oregon wildfires on our environment and on Oregonians. Our hearts go out to those who have had their lives disrupted; have lost property, cherished places or animals; or have experienced the fear and anxiety caused by these disasters. We also want to express our gratitude to the firefighters, rescuers and government employees who are working to contain the fires and protect people and property.

If you also are concerned about the economic impact of these fires, you may be interested in this post on the impact of natural disasters from the Oregon Office of Economic Analysis.

Updates about the Eagle Creek and other fires are posted regularly here by a federal inter-agency incident information system.

LWV Deplores Plan to End DACA

On September 5, the Trump administration announced their intention to reverse the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) policy, leaving the fate of 800,000 immigrants in jeopardy.

League of Women Voters president Chris Carson issued the following statement:

“This administration’s decision to rescind the ‘Dreamers’ program is shameful and does not serve national interest.  As a country of immigrants, we are made stronger by our diversity. Yet time and time again, this administration has discriminated against immigrants and communities of color.

“Reversing the DACA policy will have a devastating impact on our economy. Ending this program will increase unemployment. Thousands of the Dreamers protected by DACA were brought to this country as babies and have no memories of their birth country. These individuals are paying taxes, contributing to Social Security and are Americans in everything but the name.

“The League of Women Voters is opposed to deportation of non-criminal undocumented immigrants and we urge Congress to pass a clean Dreamers Act to protect, not turn away, the 800,000 young people who were brought to the United States as children.”