On May 20th, the League of Women Voters of Tacoma—Pierce County in cooperation with the Politics of the Possible team are sponsoring a community discussion on positive politics and our struggling political system, 6:00 to 7:30 PM, at the Moore Library (Tacoma Public Library) 215 S. 56th Ave, Tacoma.
The community discussion will be highlighted by a panel of distinguished public officials and citizens including Sam Reed, former Secretary of State; Kristine Kilduff, State Representative from 25th District and Alison McCaffree, Executive Director of Washington Nonprofits and former research assistant to Mary Ellen McCaffree in writing Politics of the Possible. Matt Driscoll, Metro Columnist, The Tacoma News Tribune, will moderate the panel and encourage audience participation.
The discussion will concentrate on personal experiences and ideas of panel members and on vital examples from the book, Politics of the Possible by Mary Ellen McCaffree and Anne McNamee Corbett. Issues in the political process that will be considered and discussed are the willingness to compromise, civility, respect, bipartisanship, citizen participation and, most importantly, problem solving that makes the public interest come first.
The League of Women Voters of Washington is partnering with Politics of the Possible to highlight the incredible story of Mary Ellen McCaffree and encourage citizen participation. The League efforts including this community discussion and their promotion of Mary Ellen’s book is part of its initiative to show that citizens can make a difference in “Making Democracy Work.”
Mrs. McCaffree was a lifetime member of the League, two-term president of the Seattle League, four-term legislator from Seattle in the 1960s, and a central figure in the “Evans Era” leadership team. Her story captured in Politics of the Possible demonstrates that politics can be positive and progressive, and that a responsible focus on problem solving can overcome partisan ills. It provides a real-world model of citizen-driven success, along with the tools for getting involved and making a difference.
The authors write in the Preface, “More than history, this book affirms what is possible here and now.” Bill Gates Sr. says, “Readers will tend to weigh what they see happening today against the important principles Mary Ellen lays out so effectively in Politics of the Possible”. The North Kitsap Herald stated, “The book tells how collaboration between the two political parties was achieved during the tumult of the 1960s, and stands as a model for our times.” (Feb. 24, 2012) Rufus Woods, Publisher of The Wenatchee World, (Sept 26, 2013) wrote: “Our democracy is not going to fix itself. While (Mrs. McCaffree) is a great model for legislators, she’s an even better role model of how the ownership all of us need to take in restoring our democracy”
Additional local community discussions of positive politics are being scheduled in Snohomish and Whatcom counties with joint sponsorship with the local Leagues of Women Voters in those areas. These local area discussions on positive politics are supported in part by a grant from Humanities Washington.