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A New Petition for Weekend / Holiday Voting

Thursday, November 30th, 2006

Just got an interesting email from a group called Mexicans and Americans Thinking Together (MATT); they’ve launched a national campaign to get Americans to sign a petition to urge Congress to make Election Day a national holiday or move it to the weekend in order to increase voter participation. Sound familiar?

In the announcement, MATT says that the Center for the Study of the American Electorate reports that an estimated 40.4% of the U.S. voting age population turned out to vote on November 7 (as reported on this blog as well). Mexico had a voter turnout of 58.9% in this year’s presidential election. This is consistent with the US’s general relative turnout performance, which is- as we’ve mentioned here before- pretty discouraging.

MATT’s got its own angle on the election reform issue. “We’re always working to encourage and learn from bicultural dialogue and this is a terrific example of one way Americans can borrow an idea from Mexico and put it to good use for every American voter,” says MATT.org’s CEO Lionel Sosa. And apparently, Henry Cisneros (Housing Secretary under Bill Clinton) has thrown his support behind the MATT effort.

The petition is available on the front of the group’s website at http://www.matt.org and directly if you click here.

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