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Forum Post: One Simple Change: Make Election Day a Federal Holiday

Posted 2 years ago on Jan. 13, 2012, 11:36 a.m. EST by publius123 (0)
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

Elections are held on Tuesdays, when most people work. Companies can disenfranchise people by simply not giving them time off to get to the polling station. In virtually every other country, Election Day is a national holiday, and voter participation rates are higher. By increasing access to the polls, we encourage participation in democracy. This is not a partisan goal, but one that stretches clear across the political spectrum.

This is a simple goal that should be easy to get through Congress. It requires only one small change: adding Election Day to the list of Federal holidays in section 6103 of Title 5 of the U.S. Code. It can be passed this year and take effect on Nov. 6, 2012.

Regardless of your politics, this is a clear, common-sense goal that all Americans should be willing to support.

7 Comments

7 Comments


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[-] 3 points by GirlFriday (17435) 2 years ago

You are making the assumption that people operate on a 9-5 schedule and are off on all holidays.

[-] 2 points by ARod1993 (2420) 2 years ago

What about moving the formal election day to July 4th, and leaving the polls open for the entire week (Monday to Saturday) encompassing Independence Day? It's a great way to make a clear connection in people's minds between voting and patriotism, which should increase turnout a bit all on its own, and doing things that way would give damn near everyone a chance to access the polls.

[-] 1 points by Concerned (455) 2 years ago

First, there are state laws protecting the rights of registered voters and time off to get to the polls....http://www.findlaw.com/voting-rights-law.html

Second, P.R. made its election day a holiday and since 1976 their voter turn out has been steadily decreasing.

Third, you are operating on several assumptions

a) that giving people the day off will translate into their placing an effort into traveling to and standing in line at polling places where - even now with state laws protecting their right to time off to vote - many do not bother.

b) that absentee voting which is available to everyone is not there to balance work needs that conflict with the easy access to getting to the polls.

c) that early voting has not already addressed this issue and is available in many states allowing voters to make arrangements to get to the polls well before the official election day. http://www.ehow.com/list_6118162_list-early-voting-states.html

Making election day a federal holiday will not increase voting for those who are already not willing to make the effort to make sure their vote is counted.

[-] -3 points by nappybegone2o12 (-31) 2 years ago

Federal workers have to many Holidays now, bad idea

[-] 4 points by GirlFriday (17435) 2 years ago

Fox News Raises Solyndra Red Herring To Deflect Attention From Romney's Record http://mediamatters.org/blog/201201090005

[-] -1 points by nappybegone2o12 (-31) 2 years ago

Hey come on now, you know that media matters is a bunch of BS. You should only tune into Fox "#1 in ratings and fair and balanced"

[-] 0 points by GirlFriday (17435) 2 years ago