Monthly Archives: October 2021
LWVMO members praised the excellent material presented at the 2021 Fall Conference on Saturday, Nov. 13. The theme was Hot Topics: Past, Present and Future.
- Legislative outlook by Boone County Clerk Brianna Lennon
- Suffrage to Statecraft. A Closer Look at Dress of Missouri Suffragists and Trailblazing Stateswomen from the MHCTC Exhibition by Nicole Johnston, Curator, Missouri Historic Costume and Textile Collection, University of Missouri
- Update on Legislative and Congressional Redistricting in MO by Sharon Schneeberger
- Paid Leave – State Study presentation by Alice Kitchen, LWV KC/Jackson/Clay/Platte Counties
- DEI presentation “Our Changing Communities”by Tina Weaver, Executive Director of the North Kansas City YMCA
- The Legislature, Courts and Voters presentation by Evelyn Maddox and Donna Hoch
- Interactive discussion of common issues for urban and rural voters to set LWVMO legislative priorities for 2022
- How to effectively communicate with legislators by Liz Zerr, MNEA
- Update on activities by local League presidents
Redistricting has a major impact on many aspects of our lives: education, healthcare, the environment and, most importantly, the voices of the people. New House and Senate district maps will shape our lives and our communities for the next 10 years.
Fair maps are more likely to be achieved when the public is actively involved in the process. The Senate Redistricting Commission held three public hearings and the House Commission held six..
Several League members testified, asking for transparency in the process of drawing new House and Senate district maps. Click here or on the People Powered Maps image at right to see the list of commissioners. To submit written testimony, go to https://oa.mo.gov/budget-planning/redistricting-office/public-testimony.
The commissions have until Dec. 23 to submit a tentative plan for both chambers with the Secretary of State’s Office and will then have until Jan. 23 to finalize their work. If the bipartisan panels cannot reach an agreement, it goes to a judicial panel. Those judges will have access to the testimony gathered at the Senate and House Redistricting Commission hearings.
McLeod explained the redistricting process recently on the “Radio Friends with Paul Pepper” program. Watch the video at https://youtu.be/z0958wB6NNA. Click here for LWVMO’s position or here for an explanation of the difference between redistricting and gerrymandering from the ACLU.
Former President Evelyn Maddox told redistricting commissioners why they must use total population to ensure fair and just maps for Missouri at public hearings on Oct. 19. “If legislative district maps are based only on citizens of voting age, at least 22 percent of Missourians would lose representation in the General Assembly.”
“New district maps that are approved will be in place for the next decade,” Maddox testified. “A lot of changes will occur in the next 10 years, including current teenagers becoming eligible to vote, and refugees and other immigrants gaining citizenship and the right to vote. Are they to be denied their representation after becoming voters?”
Mary Lindsay, Anne Calvert and Sarah Starnes also testified at the Kansas City hearing, stressing the need for maps that are fair to everybody. Lindsay said, “We urge commissioners to draw House legislative districts which ensure that racial and language minorities share proportionally in the political process…. Innovative technology could ascertain evidence of partisan unfairness and signs of gerrymandering of districts through cracking and packing of communities.”
Joan Hubbard, LWV member from Metro St. Louis, represented LWVMO at recent House and Senate Redistricting Commission hearings in St. Louis. She recognized the “once-a-decade impact that redistricting has on the power of voters and on the vitality of democracy in our state.”
Hubbard said, “In all 50 states, the League stresses that honorable redistricting requires fairness, accuracy, transparency and maximum public participation and input.” She encouraged commissioners to draw maps in a transparent way and allow ample time for analysis and public comments. Click here for video of some of her testimony.
Several other League members testified, including Nancy Price, Angie Dunlap, Steve Skrainka, Nancy Thompson, Stefany Brot and Don Crozier.