PCEA Update 


Independents have been sending letters the PCEA urging they take heed of independents in their final report to the President.  National Committee member and Maine activist Joe Pickering garnered a third letter from Maine elected officials as U.S. Senator Angus King (one of the only 2 independents in Congress) weighed in.  Here is Senator King's letter.


Among those who added their voice to the Commission were 
Norma Van Dyke, of Pennsylvania. Van Dyke attended the hearing in Philadelphia representing Independent Pennsylvania. Also, Richard Grundy of California, Katya Redpath of New York, and Evelyn Dougherty of the Massachusetts Coalition of Independent Voters. (Click names to read their respective letters).


The PCEA will be holding what is expected to be its final hearing in DC on December 3. Greg Moohn from Virginia and Steve Johnson from Maryland (pictured here) will represent independents at the hearing.


Oregon Independents Come Together
Chuck Young
Paul Scott
Independent Voters of Oregon (IVOO) was born in Eugene, OR this past week.  The meeting was held in the home of Paul Scott of Eugene and was attended by Dave Ellis of Portland and Freddy Gompf and Chuck Young of Roseburg. "We discussed ways to reach out to other independents  in our state seeking to open up the primary election to independents," said Chuck Young. The group also set out a strategy for contacting others including elected officials and organizations who might be interested in partnering.  Chuck, who is a professor at Umpqua Community College will be holding an informal gathering at his home on December 8 for students and neighbors who have expressed interest.

Dave Ellis meets Catana Barnes at IndependentVoting.org's national conference in NY earlier this year.
Leaders in the West Meet to Plan Strategy
17 Activists from Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Nevada, Oregon, Utah and Wyoming joined a conference call organized by national election reform committee member and founder of Independent Voters of Nevada, Catana Barnes.  Catana brought the independent leaders in the region together to connect with each other. The general consensus was to start small. Bring together the independent activists from the region, connect with one another, and build from there," said Barnes. "The idea is for all of us to get to know one another better and to create active, ongoing engagement."  On the initial the group established a planning committee for an in-person meeting in Las Vegas this April, and agreed to hold regular gatherings via conference calls or video to keep talking. Independent leaders in other part of the country are picking up Catana's outreach model and organizing their own regional gatherings.


Utah independents: Expanding Their Network
Photo and writeup by Anna Jeffs (not pictured)
On November 16th, seventeen people attended a breakfast gathering at Warren's Restaurant, in Syracuse, Utah organized by Utah League of Independent Voters founder Randy Miller.  The meeting was held for those interested in creating a voice for independents in Syracuse. "It was nice to network with some of the many Syracuse residents who care about our city and the direction it's going," said Miller.  "We want to organize the voices of the people in the most effective way possible." In attendance were some self-described politicos, others fresh off involvement in local politics during this last election, and some who were just tired of being told what to think!   

One of the discussions centered on creating a phone tree to expand their network.  "If we are organized, we can have more strength behind the voices that have been muted for so long."  Randy talked about the unharnessed power of smart and articulate people in Syracuse who just haven't met each other yet. They discussed creating a newsletter that is funded and distributed by the network. The group will be meeting next Saturday, January 11th, time and place to be determined.  Meanwhile, ULIV leader PJ Steiner will be holding his own meetup for independents in Utah County on December 17th.



Open Primaries Roundup

Hawaii - Federal Judge Uphold's Hawaii's Open Primary System as ConstitutionalHawaii Star Advertiser, November 14, 2013


Alaska - Letter to the editor,
Juneau Empire, November 27, 2013

California and Louisiana currently enjoy the benefits of open primaries. The citizens love it and the party bosses hate it so you know it's got to be good.


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