Why Tuesday?

Get Involved

Posts by Jacob Soboroff

Saturday, November 10th, 2012

Will Obama “Fix That”?

President Obama said something in his election night speech that had election reform advocates like me overjoyed. The president, apparently off the cuff as HuffPost’s Dan Froomkin reported, called for election reform.

As he spoke in Chicago, he thanked everyone who cast a ballot “whether you voted for the first time, or waited in line for a very long time” — then he quickly added, in an evident ad lib, “by the way we have to fix that.”

After another election with anemic turnout — only 60% of eligible Americans showed up at the polls, far behind most countries — and reports of long lines, malfunctioning machines and voter intimidation at the polls, President Obama’s remarks were music to election reformers’ ears. But as much as I hope the president will follow through on his off handed but crucially important remark — I’m not so sure, and I have a personal reason to feel this way.

Read the rest of this post at The Huffington Post.

Tuesday, May 22nd, 2012

Millions Stuck With Tuesday Voting

This election cycle we’ve partnered with Academy Award-winning Participant Media to produce Take Part on Tuesday. There you’ll find stories that bring the issues the candidates are talking about to life.

As part of the initiative, I’m hosing a new video series called Civics in a Minute in which we… you got it… explain U.S. civics lessons like the Electoral College or who picks the Vice President in about a minute.

Today’s topic: why we vote on Tuesdays.

The video contains a fact we don’t highlight enough, and is perhaps the most important statistic in the fight to move Election Day from Tuesday to the weekend:

15 states and tens of millions of Americans have Tuesday-ONLY voting, with no option for early or absentee voting.

Watch the video to find out which states will only let you vote on Tuesday. (more…)

Sunday, May 6th, 2012

French Turnout Has Tweeps Talking

As we were saying… France today voted for president with an 80% turnout. Today, as in a Sunday. And why do we vote on Tuesday again in the United States, where our turnout averages 50%? Oh, that’s right. No good reason.

One of our major disappointments with the recent U.S. Government Accountability Office study about implementing nationwide weekend voting was that it didn’t look at voter turnout in other countries with weekend voting. The good news is, people are starting to take notice.

Today a few of Twitter’s boldface names — and many more — pointed out how silly it is America votes smack in the middle of the work week. First came the realization that France had turnout we’ve only dreamed of in the United States, by Anthony De Rosa of Reuters.

After his tweet, the conversation starting picking up. (more…)

Sunday, April 22nd, 2012

Weekend Voting on ABC’s This Week

Welcome to those of you who are viewers of This Week With George Stephanopoulos who made your way here after hearing him talk about us this morning on ABC. The idea of moving Election Day to the weekend may be new to you, but it’s not to Stephanopoulos. In 2008, he endorsed the idea in an ABC News op-ed.

[Rep. Steve Israel, D-NY, and Norm Ornstein, resident scholar at the American Enterprise Institute] argue Tuesday voting has depressed voter turnout rates in the US, and unfairly penalizes low-income voters who often choose between having to work and voting… I think Israel and Ornstein raise an important point here. Let’s go to weekend voting.

Today Stephanopoulos was responding to a viewer-submitted question about the status of the Weekend Voting Act, the bill that would move Election Day from Tuesday, where it’s been for 167 years, to Saturday and Sunday in order to increase voter turnout. (more…)

Tuesday, April 17th, 2012

Weekend Voting, Made Pretty

We’ve again partnered with Participant Media’s TakePart to produce this awesome infographic about why voting on Tuesday (instead of the weekend) is just plain silly, and how Tuesday voting contributes to America’s terrible voter turnout.

Our big question:

Are Americans Doing It Wrong?

Obviously, yes! We sorted through all of the data we have collected over the years to make the best case, in the most visually pleasing way possible, for moving Election Day to the weekend. International elections, voter turnout stats, census data and even a little history thrown in. It’s all there!

This infographic is part of Participant’s new TakePart on Tuesday 2012 election coverage. There’s lots more to come from there. But first, take a look at the red, white and blue beauty and let us know what you think! (more…)

Tuesday, April 10th, 2012

Today’s Lesson: Tuesday Voting

We’re excited to announce that my February 2012 talk at TED Active about our work has been chosen to be a part of the curriculum of TED-Ed, the education initiative from the TED conference. Now students around the country — and the world — will all have a chance to learn the absurd answer to why Americans vote on Tuesday. Here’s the video description from the team at TED-Ed:

Since 1845, Americans have been voting on Tuesdays — but why? In this humorous talk, Jacob Soboroff shares the history of Election Day and shows how voting on a Tuesday affects voter turnout.

It was an honor to take the main stage in Palm Springs this year, and an even greater honor for all of the attendees at the main TED conference in Long Beach to see the talk presented on the main stage there. We’ve got photos from both Palm Springs and Long Beach, so be sure to check those out. (more…)

About Us

Why Tuesday? is a non-partisan, nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization founded in 2005 to find solutions to increase voter turnout and participation in elections... More

The Answer

In 1845, before Florida, California, and Texas were states or slavery had been abolished, Congress needed to pick a time for Americans to vote... More

Recent Comments

Patrick, France is a post-Christian secular country. Relatively few of them attend church, and voting on Sunday does not interfere with their religious practices, because most of the population is not religious...

Posted by John on blog post Why Do We Vote On Tuesday?

In France they last voted on a Sunday. France is despite the Bourbon legacy a largely Catholic country, yet they vote on Sunday...

Posted by Patrick on blog post Why Do We Vote On Tuesday?

I think weekend voting would make the most sense, as people wouldn't have tu run home after work or wake up early to hit the polling stations beforehand.

Posted by Zander on blog post Why Do We Vote On Tuesday?