Making Democracy Work

Nonpartisan Policy of LWV-LCF

The League is a nonpartisan political organization. We do not endorse candidates or political parties. We do take positions on issues after careful study and deliberation.

NonPartisan Policy LWV-Lower Cape Fear

The League's purpose is to promote political responsibility through informed and active participation in government. The League of Women Voters is nonpartisan in that it does not support or oppose political parties or candidates; it is political on selected governmental issues after member study and agreement.

In order to protect the League's nonpartisan reputation, it is important that the members and the public understand the following:

1. Members of the LWV-LCF are encouraged to participate fully in the political process.

2. The President, Voter Services Chair, and Membership Chair should not participate in partisan politics during their terms of office. This includes attending party meetings and caucuses, any public display of partisan affiliation or candidate support such as displaying bumper stickers, campaign buttons, yard signs, or inclusion in endorsement advertisements. However, they may serve on public boards or commissions to which they are appointed.

3. League members should not wear candidate buttons to League functions. No candidate material is to be distributed except at candidates' forums. Any League member acting on behalf of a candidate in a partisan manner shall not at the same time wear a LWV button or otherwise overtly identify herself or himself with LWV.

4. All Board members should carry out the responsibilities of every voter in exercising the franchise. All Board members, except those listed in 2 above, may participate in party activities including precinct meetings and caucuses and also attend events sponsored by individual candidates. However, Board members should refrain from assuming highly visible, active roles in candidates' campaigns. Discreet, passive public display of partisan affiliation or candidate support is acceptable, such as displaying bumper stickers, campaign buttons, yard signs, or inclusion in endorsement advertisements (but not passing out candidate flyers outside the polling place or holding a yard sign at busy intersections. Such activities are neither discreet nor passive.)

5. LWV must maintain a careful nonpartisan stance in its Voter Services activities. It should avoid co-sponsorship with groups or organizations which endorse or have affiliations with candidates. Moderators must be neutral.

6. The political activities of a spouse or relative of a Board member will be considered separate and distinct from the activities of a Board member.

7. LWV has a reputation sufficiently strong to ensure that gifts to LWV-LCF from office holders or candidates can be accepted without being misconstrued as endorsements of those donors.

8. Since a general policy can never cover every situation, the Board will need to deal with specific cases as these arise.

9. This policy is to be reviewed and endorsed or changed at the beginning of each League year.

Adopted 1995; Endorsed 1997, 1998, 2001, 2003; Changed 2005; Endorsed 2008, 2009, 2014; Changed and Endorsed 2015.