LWVUS Position for Action on Campaign Finance:
The League of Women Voters of the United States believes that the methods of financing political campaigns should:
- Enhance political equality for all citizens;
- Ensure maximum participation by citizens in the political process;
- Protect representative democracy from being distorted by big spending in election campaigns;
- Provide voters sufficient information about candidates and campaign issues to make informed choices;
- Ensure transparency and the public’s right to know who is using money to influence elections;
- Enable candidates to compete equitably for public office;
- Ensure that candidates have sufficient funds to communicate their messages to the public; and
- Combat corruption and undue influence in government.
Click to read the League’s complete position on Money in Politics
Options for Reforming Money in Politics outlines legislative approaches (example: more transparency), regulatory approaches (example: FEC enforce existing campaign finance laws), and other approaches (example: amend the U.S. Constitution).
Local League Action
Electoral College / National Popular Vote Compact
THE LEAGUE SUPPORTS THE DIRECT-POPULAR-VOTE METHOD FOR ELECTING THE PRESIDENT AND VICE-PRESIDENT
The Electoral College is a process established by the founding fathers as a compromise between election of the President by Congress and election by popular vote. In short the people in each state vote for electors who then vote for the President and Vice-President.
Although at the time of the founding fathers there may have been good reasons for the compromise resulting in the Electoral College, today it has lost much of its relevance.
The League of Women Voters of the United States believes that the direct-popular-vote method for electing the President and Vice-President is essential to representative government. The League of Women Voters believes, therefore, that the Electoral College should be abolished.
The 2010 Convention adopted a concurrence to support the National Popular Vote Compact as another method of selecting the President until such time as the Electoral College is abolished.
A state enacting the National Popular Vote, would allocate all of that state’s electoral votes to the presidential candidate who receives the most popular votes in all fifty states and the District of Columbia. The bill would take effect only when enacted, in identical form, by states possessing a majority (270) of the 538 total electoral votes.
Redistricting / Reapportionment
After each census, each state is responsible for drawing the boundaries of districts for its own legislature and for U.S. Representatives from that state. This process is called redistricting.
The size of the U.S House of Representatives is set by federal law at 435, but the number of representatives from each state may change every 10 years, based on changing population. Each state is guaranteed at least one congressional district. The process of setting the number for each state is called reapportionment.
In Colorado, the General Assembly is responsible for redistricting of congressional districts. The districts for state representatives and senators are drawn by an independent Reapportionment Commission, which LWVCO helped to establish in 1974. For more information, visit the Redistricting in Colorado page on Colorado’s Official State Web Portal.
League of Women Voters National Work on Redistricting
The League has worked for decades to ensure a more fair process of redistricting in each state. To assist the state Leagues, a national Redistricting Task Force has been created.
LWVCO Position on Redistricting:
POSITION IN BRIEF:
Support of measures to establish an agency other than the General Assembly to redistrict the Colorado General Assembly and the Colorado Congressional Districts. Support of redrawing the districts of both houses of the state legislature and the Colorado U.S. congressional districts based on specific criteria.
POSITION: (Adopted 1973, rev. 1983, 2011)
Support for the following criteria for drawing the boundaries of legislative districts of both houses of the state legislature and of Colorado U.S. congressional districts:
- Each district should have a population as nearly equal as may be required by the Constitution of the U.S., but in no event shall there be more than 5% deviation between the most populous and the least populous district.
- Each district shall be as compact an area as possible and the aggregate linear distance of all district boundaries shall be as short as possible.
- Except when necessary to meet equal population requirements, no part of a county shall be added to all or part of another county in forming districts. Within counties whose territory is contained in more than one district, the number of cities and towns whose territory is contained in more than one district shall be as few as possible.
- Consistent with the preceding criteria, communities of interest including ethnic, cultural, economic trade area, geographic and demographic factors shall be preserved within a single district wherever possible.
Resource for citizens and activists:
The Purple Book: A Colorado Compendium of Useful Fiscal Facts
The Colorado Fiscal Institute (CFI) has created an easy-to-read guide that gives basic information about the state budget and taxes as well as many simple explanations about policies and laws that impact Coloradans. It can be ordered on the CFI website.