Making Democracy Work

Shine a Light for Voting Rights Vigil on Aug. 6


The Voting Rights Act of August 6, 1965, has been referred to as the most effective piece of legislation in our nation’s history. Born out of the March on Selma, this civil rights era amendment protects the rights to vote of all U.S. citizens by requiring states that have a history of voter discrimination to submit any changes to voting laws through the federal government before enacting the laws in their states.

The Voting Rights Act was effective for years - until it was gutted as a result of the Supreme Court Ruling in Shelby County v. Holder on June 25, 2013. The ruling stripped federal authorities of the ability to enforce the VRA, therefore rendering it ineffective. Since the decision, we’ve seen some states implement laws that disenfranchise voters and disproportionately impact young people and communities of color - including voter ID laws, gerrymandering and voter purges.

year, Congress has introduced legislation to restore voting rights protections
in the VRA - in a new piece of legislation called the Voting Rights Advancement
Act (HR 4). If passed, this would once again provide teeth to the voting rights
protections designed to ensure every person has a voice and equal access to the

On Tuesday, August 6, Democracy activists are hitting the streets to show their support for the Voting Rights Advancement Act. Voting Rights advocates around the country will hold candlelight vigils to shed light on the impact of the Shelby decision, and demand that Congress restore the voting rights protections in the Voting Rights Act.

We will be having our vigil at 8 PM in front of the Ames City Hall.

In anticipation of the vigil, we will have a “Sign-in” for League members on Friday, August 2, [...]

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    Hard Won/Not Done: Centennial Commemoration of Ratification of the 19th Amendment

Hard Won/Not Done: Centennial Commemoration of Ratification of the 19th Amendment

The 19th Amendment Centennial Commemoration Project is actively working on a variety of projects to celebrate the centennial of the passage of the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution in 1920, and particularly of the many notable connections and contribution of Iowans to the suffrage movement and the eventual ratification of the Amendment. The Iowa League of Women Voters is one of the four organizations leading this effort.

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    LWV of Ames and Story County to Host 2019 State LWV Convention

LWV of Ames and Story County to Host 2019 State LWV Convention

The 2019 State Convention of the Iowa League of Women Voters will be held on June 7 and 8 in Ames. The conference venue is the Iowa State University Alumni Center at 429 Alumni Lane.

Making Democracy Work Award, 2019

The winner of the third annual Making Democracy Work Award is Bev Kruempel. The letter nominating Bev for the award stated that “Bev Kruempel volunteers quietly in endeavors that are so crucial to often forgotten individuals in our community.” Through her work, she has fulfilled all the criteria for this award in many and varied ways. Bev is a consistent supporter and a tireless advocate for the disenfranchised, those less fortunate, and the youth of the community. The award was presented at the League of Women Voters of Ames and Story County annual meeting on April 13 by Edna Clinton, who, along with her husband, Wayne Clinton, was the winner of the second Making Democracy Work award, presented last year.

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    Nominate someone for the 2019 Making Making Democracy Work Award

Nominate someone for the 2019 Making Making Democracy Work Award

The League of Women Voters of Ames & Story County is calling for nominations for its annual Making Democracy Work Award. This award recognizes and celebrates an individual or organization who:

Envisions ways to improve the community
Has actively participated in creating a strong, safe, vibrant community
Has mobilized others to help effect beneficial change
Leads efforts to introduce public policy that promotes fairness, equality and diversity
Is passionate about safeguarding democracy

Nominations are invited from the community as well as from League members. The Making Democracy Work Award recognizes broader contributions than solely to the League of Women Voters, although participation in League activities certainly may qualify as a portion of the contribution for which an awardee would be recognized.

The nomination form is available at Please note that you will need to submit three letters of support with your nomination.

Send the completed nomination form and letters of support to: LWV of Ames and Story County, PO Box 2266, Ames, IA 50010, or email to Nominations are due no later than March 15, 2019.

Candidate Forum Audio Recordings Available from KHOI FM Web site

KHOI FM Community Radio in Ames records our candidate forums for later broadcast on their station and placement on their Web site.  These may be edited to a length which fits their program format.

Iowa House Districts 45, 46, 48 (October 3 at Nevada Public Library) 

Iowa Senate Districts 23 and 25 (October 11 at Fairview Lodge)

Story County Board of Supervisors (October 15 at Story County Extension)

Story County Treasurer, Recorder, Attorney (October 29 at Ames Public Library)

There also was a candidate forum for Iowa Senate District 49 on October 25 at Story County Extension.  A separate recording of this forum is not available, but excerpts can be heard in the recording of Local Talk at 7 am on October 29 on KHOI.  On this page, scroll down to the 7 am podcast of Local Talk on October 29 and click on the "Play" button.  The forum excerpts start at about the 25 minute and 50 second mark of the recording.