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Posts by Jacob Soboroff

Monday, February 13th, 2012

TED Talk: Ask Why For A Change

Late last year I was asked to travel to Phoenix to speak at the TEDxPhoenix conference at the Mesa Arts Center, the site of the next debate between the GOP presidential candidates.

The topic of the day’s speeches was “Ask _____ For A Change,” and of couse I filled in the blank with the word “Why” as a starting point to discuss the work we have done here since 2005 to increase America’s terrible voter participation. Here’s how the organizers described it:

In his TEDxPhoenix 11.11.11 TEDxTalk, Jacob takes us through his extraordinary journey with the question “Why?”, and more specifically, the question “Why do we vote on Tuesday?”

The video of my talk was just posted, and in it I detail the six year history of our organization — and how powerful our simple question truly is — in nine minutes with video, slides, and some laughs. (more…)

Tuesday, January 31st, 2012

Close… But No Answer

Yesterday President Barack Obama held a first-of-its-kind Presidential Google+ Hangout from the Roosevelt Room in the White House, answering questions from everyday Americans which receive thousands of views on YouTube and posed live to him in a cool back-and-forth video chat.

We submitted a question, asking President Obama if he’d support moving Election Day to the weekend to increase America’s historically terrible voter participation. Our submission was endorsed by, amongst hundreds of others, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, U.S. Representative Steve Israel, and Why Tuesday? advisory board member Meghan McCain.

As the forum began a short clip from the question we recorded came on screen during the intro video, and you saw and heard me ask:

Why do we vote on Tuesday?

It was an exciting start to the forum, and some online noticed this, and tweeted as much. (more…)

Wednesday, January 25th, 2012

Join Us & Ask Obama: Why Tuesday?

UPDATE — 1/30/12: The Google+ Hangout with President Obama will take place today at 5:30ET. Our question (both the combined video question and text question) received hundreds of votes, and scores of similar questions were submitted. Incidentally, a question about making Election Day a national holiday to increase American voter turnout is one of the top voted questions on the White House’s very own petition site We The People, with over 11,000 votes as of this posting.

January 30th President Obama will be a part of a first-of-its-kind online forum where he’ll answer questions, live in a Google+ Hangout, from everyday Americans. We’ve submitted a question, asking the President to support moving Election Day to the weekend to increase America’s historically terrible voter turnout. New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, Why Tuesday? advisory board member Meghan McCain and U.S. Representative Steve Israel, the sponsor of the Weekend Voting Act, have tweeted their support for our question, and we want you to join them. (more…)

Sunday, January 22nd, 2012

Newt Wins… On A Saturday

It will come as no surprise we’re pretty thrilled to wake up to the news that the voters of South Carolina cast ballots in record numbers in their GOP primary yesterday… on a Saturday. According to the vice chairman of the South Carolina Republican Party, that’s exactly why they moved Election Day to the weekend.

“We’re just trying to increase participation in the primary,” he said. “We believe in South Carolina that we pick presidents. And on a day that you pick presidents, you want to have as many people as possible voting.”

Granted, 21% of registered voters isn’t something to write home about, but it’s a start. Here’s our question: now that he’s won big in South Carolina on a Saturday, will Newt Gingrich reconsider his opposition to weekend voting? (more…)

Wednesday, January 18th, 2012

At MLK Celebration, Weekend Voting

Our chairman and co-founder Ambassador Andrew Young gave the 13th annual MLK Jr. Lecture tonight at the University of North Carolina on the occasion of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthday. Ambassador Young fought alongside Dr. King for Civil Rights and it is in his memory and spirit our organization was founded in 2005.

Thank you to our friends at Paper Eskimo for the beautiful donation of pink and gold party plates. These really made the event shine! The guests really loved all the beautiful decor.

“We’re pleased to bring to Carolina someone who as a young leader marched side-by-side with Dr. King and rose through the ranks of the social justice and civil rights movements and beyond,” said Terri Houston, the university’s interim chief diversity officer, about Ambassador Young’s speech.

Ambassador Young discussed our efforts to increase voter participation at the event, which was live tweeted by reesenews, “a digital news publication powered by students at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Journalism and Mass Communication.” What follows are a collection of tweets before and during Ambassador Young’s question and answer session with Jack Boger, dean and Wade Edwards Distinguished Professor in the School of Law, and UNC senior Amber Koonce. (more…)

Sunday, January 15th, 2012

GAO Study: Vote On The Weekend?

The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) released a study last week assessing costs and benefits of holding Election Day on the weekend instead of Tuesday, as is called for in the Weekend Voting Act. The study, as CBS News points out, was unfortunately but not surprisingly inconclusive:

“Since nationwide federal elections have never been held on a weekend, it is difficult to draw valid conclusions about how moving federal elections to a weekend would affect voter turnout,” the GAO report said.

The GAO report focused in large part on the logistical challenges of holding elections on weekends, identifying challenges in doing so including “finding poll workers and polling places, and securing ballots and voting equipment-and expected cost increases.”

We believe the concerns raised by the GAO report are valid but certainly shouldn’t be a reason to keep Election Day on Tuesday. For one, the cost to our democracy is far higher to have chronic low voter turnout than a modest increase in the monetary cost of administering elections. (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

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?

Sunday would be inconvenient for Christians. We should, 1. Move the voting day to Saturday. 2...

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