Why Tuesday?

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‘Election 2006’ Category

Monday, November 6th, 2006

Why Tuesday? And Why This Competition Is NOT Over After Today.

We’re encouraging people around the country to ask their politicians a seemingly trivial question.

We’re devoting a website to the discussion of the clips we get.

Why are we doing this?

The answer is that we believe a conversation about structural and procedural election reforms, reforms designed to get more Americans into the voting booths, is one of our country’s most pressing needs. Why Tuesday and GOTW are not just about asking one question; what we mean by “why Tuesday” is, “Why are we doing things this way? Why aren’t we questioning how we run elections if they aren’t working? How can we be doing better?

There is going to be a dramatic election today. Much will be written about what the outcome means for policy and politics over the next two years. There will be some contested elections- machines that didn’t work, polling stations so woefully under-staffed or -machined that voters are unjustly disenfranchised by clunky realities- and a good (perhaps a great) deal will be written about that. And then there will be turnout. There may be a “spike” in participation tomorrow, which for a midterm election means clearing forty-two or forty-three percent. There will be some written about this, and some brief discussion of the reasons behind our decline in participation since World War II. And then, everyone will get on with wondering who’s going to run in 2008.

This is fine, if you don’t believe our voter participation levels are a grave problem. But we think they are. We know many people and organizations agree, and we’re trying to pitch in and draw attention to the issue in our own way. The question it comes down to is simple: how can we change the procedures of voting- when we vote, how we vote- to do the best we can for the greatest number of Americans?

More after the break…
(more…)

Friday, November 3rd, 2006

Senator Hillary Clinton (D – NY), Rep. Charles Rangel (D – NY 15th), Rep. Jerry Nadler (D- NY 8th): “The Ten Commandments”

Jacob and Barnett were having all the fun, so I decided to grab my friend Jen and see if we couldn’t get some clips ourselves. We got into a DCCC fundraiser in Midtown Manhattan, and had the chance to talk to two Congressmen and a Senator- none of whom knew the answer!- but each of whom had something interesting to say on the topic.

We lost audio (and would’ve lost video too, if Jen hadn’t guerrilla-like remembered she could record image on her Treo), but check the clip to hear what Congressman Nadler said- it might be the wittiest response we’ve gotten so far.

Special thanks also to Sasha Gordon for her invaluable editing assistance.

Thursday, October 26th, 2006

Senator Richard Lugar (R- IN): “Thanks for the piece of education”

Road Team: At an event touting Indiana’s newest biodiesel fueling station, we had a chance to catch up with Senator Richard Lugar. Senator Lugar has held his office for thirty years, and serves as Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. In other words, he knows his stuff. But again, even though he’d clearly given thought to the idea of making Election Day a holiday, he didn’t know why we vote on Tuesdays- although he seemed glad when Jake could fill him in.

Wednesday, October 25th, 2006

Congressman Tim Ryan (D – OH 17th District): “Horse and Buggy”

Another installment from the GOTW Road Team. Congressman Tim Ryan was generous enough to give us a few minutes of time; the Congressman’s had a long career in public service, and has been an up-and-coming Member of the House since 2003. He thinks that a national holiday might be the way to go, and wants to preserve the collective ritual of everyone voting together. When we asked him the question, he seemed to have some idea- check out the clip for his answer.

We don’t generally travel by horse and buggy (or wagon, or carriage) anymore, of course. Most of us travel with 160 horses under the hoods of our cars after we get a quote from insurance companies like One Sure Insurance, or by public transport. Makes us wonder: does the reasoning behind Tuesday voting still hold up?

The search continues…

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?