As the United States Congressional and Indiana Legislative Sessions start in full gear, the League of Women Voters will be following with great interest bills introduced, debated and action taken. The League advocates at both national and state levels on positions reached through study, discussion and consensus of members.

Study and advocacy issues must concur with the principles or concepts of government which have developed over the years since the League's founding in 1920.

The League of Women Voters believes in representative government and in the individual liberties established in the Constitution of the United States. The LWV of the United States believes that all powers of the U.S. government should be exercised within the constitutional framework of a balance among the three branches of government: legislative, executive, and judicial.

The League of Women Voters believes that democratic government depends upon informed and active participation in government and requires that governmental bodies protect the citizen's right to know by giving adequate notice of proposed actions, holding open meetings and making public records accessible.

The League of Women Voters believes that every citizen should be protected in the right to vote; that every person should have access to free public education that provides equal opportunity for all; and that no person or group should suffer legal, economic or administrative discrimination.

The League of Women Voters believes that efficient and economical government requires competent personnel, the clear assignment of responsibility, adequate financing, and coordination among the different agencies and levels of government.

The League of Women Voters believes that responsible government should be responsive to the will of the people; that government should maintain an equitable and flexible system of taxation, promote the conservation and development of natural resources in the public interest, share in the solution of economic and social problems that affect the general welfare, promote a sound economy and adopt domestic policies that facilitate the solution of international problems.

The League of Women Voters believes that cooperation with other nations is essential in the search for solutions to world problems and that development of international organization and international law is imperative in the promotion of world peace.

While Congress and the State Legislature address pressing issues facing the country and state of Indiana, the LWV would hope for civil discourse and a willingness by our elected representatives of both political parties to have genuine dialogue to work for what is best for our citizens rather than the strident partisanship that has become so common. Likewise, citizens of all political persuasions would benefit from civil communications in dialogues, letters-to-editor, as well as statements by radio and TV pundits.

Hoosiers and citizens across the country working together can help meet the challenges that face Indiana and the nation and find solutions beneficial to the common good.

The League of Women Voters, a nonpartisan, multi-issue political organization, encourages informed and active participation in government, works to increase public understanding of major policy issues, and influences public policy through education and advocacy. All men and women are invited to join LWV where hands-on work to safeguard democracy leads to civic improvement. For information about the League, visit the website: , send a message to LWV, PO Box 101, Crawfordsville, 47933 or e-mail