Why Tuesday?

Get Involved

‘Election 2010’ Category

Sunday, November 7th, 2010

2010 Voter Turnout: Not Good

NYT Headline

We wish the above New York Times headline said “Why Tuesday Was Terrible For Voters,” because it would be totally true.

Despite great enthusiasm and predictions of higher voter turnout, 2010 midterm elections were only a slight improvement from the 2006 midterms, when just over 40% of voters headed to the polls. This time around the total was 41.5% according to Michael McDonald at George Mason University.

Young voters stayed at home in greater numbers than in recent elections, and an entire third of voters who came out in 2008 didn’t show on Tuesday.

It’s time to start a loud national conversation about changing America’s dismal voter participation, staring with the day we vote. San Francisco is doing it. New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg talking about it. We hope you’ll join us in making election reform an issue our elected officials cannot afford to avoid.

Wednesday, November 3rd, 2010

Weekend Voting Coming To San Fran

SF Weekend Voting

There were lots of election returns to pay attention to last night, but there was one in particular we had our eye on. “Proposition I” in San Francisco, also known as the “Saturday Voting Act,” passed, establishing a Saturday Election Day in addition to the traditional Tuesday one for the November 2011 general election there. According to the data, voters there cast their ballots overwhelmingly in favor of the proposition.

I – Polling places open on the Saturday before the November 2011 election

590 of 590 precincts reporting

• YES 92,158
• NO 63,949

New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg endorsed the idea last week and encouraged the voters of San Francisco to make their city a national leader on the issue of election reform. The Saturday Election Day will take place if the money is raised privately to fund the endeavor. Proposition I was pushed by Why Tuesday? San Francisco, a local movement inspired by our work nationally.

Illustration of San Francisco voting on Saturday via Why Tuesday? San Francisco.

Thursday, October 28th, 2010

Bloomberg: Thumbs Up To San Fran Weekend Voting

Bloomberg Voting

New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg today added another election reform endorsement to his growing list. The mayor is supporting the San Fransisco effort to implement weekend voting inspired by Why Tuesday? and our work around the country. Below is the full press release we sent out with details about Mayor Bloomberg’s announcement.

NYC MAYOR BLOOMBERG ENDORSES SAN FRANSISCO “SATURDAY VOTING ACT”

Endorsement Follows Bloomberg’s Earlier Support Of National “Weekend Voting Act”

“Proposition I” Is On The November 2nd Ballot

SAN FRANCISCO – New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg is lending his name to an effort to increase voter turnout by making it easier for voters to get to the polls. Mayor Bloomberg today endorsed San Francisco’s Proposition I, known as the “Saturday Voting Act.” If Proposition I passes on November 2nd, it would require San Francisco to open all polling places on the Saturday before the November 2011 election, in addition to the traditional Tuesday Election Day. The Saturday Election Day would be funded by private donations, all of which would be made public on the Department of Elections website. San Francisco’s “Saturday Voting Act” was inspired by the work nationally of WhyTuesday.org a non-partisan, non-profit 501(c)(3) committed to increasing American voter turnout.

Mayor Bloomberg has long been a supporter of national election reforms. In September 2009, Mayor Bloomberg announced his “Easy to Vote, Easy to Run” national election reform plan. In it the Mayor called on Congress to pass the Weekend Voting Act, sponsored by Senator Herb Kohl of Wisconsin and Congressman Steve Israel of Long Island, which seeks to shift national Election Day from Tuesday to Saturday and Sunday. In polls and in United States Census data, the majority of voters who failed to vote blamed the inconvenience of Election Day.

“Voters in San Francisco have a great opportunity this Election Day to be national leaders on an issue that a growing number of Democrats, Republicans, and independents are all supporting: weekend voting,” said Mayor Bloomberg. “By passing the Saturday Voting Act, San Francisco voters will become the first major city in the country to allow voters to cast their ballots in municipal elections on the weekend. I support bringing weekend voting to New York City, and I look forward to working with local civic and community leaders to develop our own weekend voting proposal. Voter participation is crucial to a healthy democracy. By giving busy voters more opportunities to cast their ballots, we can help increase participation. And San Francisco voters would still have the option of voting on the traditional Tuesday Election Day. Weekend voting is an idea whose time has come – and San Francisco can help lead the way.”

“If we really want to increase access to the democratic process, especially for working families and single parents, we should do what the rest of the world does and vote on the weekend,” said Alex Tourk, founder of WhyTuesdaySF.org. “I just think it’s the right thing to do, and it’s an honor that leaders like Mayor Bloomberg are joining this effort and drawing attention to the fact that holding elections mid-week, when the working class has the most obligations, is a good indication that our electoral system is antiquated.”

“We are thrilled Mayor Bloomberg continues to act as a megaphone for increasing America’s dismally low voter participation,” said Jacob Soboroff, executive director of WhyTuesday.org. “The Mayor’s commitment to making election reform an issue our national and local leaders cannot afford to avoid is a quality too few of our elected representatives share today.”

ABOUT WHY TUESDAY?

Why Tuesday? is a non-profit, non-partisan 501(c)3 organization founded in 2005 to raise awareness about the state of America’s voting system and to find solutions to increase voter turnout and participation in elections. Using Web 2.0 technology, Why Tuesday? provides a platform for national dialogue about the current voting system, problems with our current voting system, and solutions that can directly improve the voting process, increase registration and drive turnout. The Why Tuesday? documentary video blog has been seen millions of times across multiple online and traditional media platforms, including national news outlets. Why Tuesday? was the recipient of the Film Your Issue Award as well as being the only non-mainstream news outlet nominated for the 2008 Webby Award for Best Political Blog.

Photo of Mayor Bloomberg voting via LIFE.

Tuesday, October 26th, 2010

Rep. Ellison (DFL-MN) Likes Weekend Voting!

NEW YORK, NY – Check out the first Get Out the Why video submission! Jacob Wheeler caught up with Representative Keith Ellison (DFL-MN) to ask why we vote on Tuesday?

Although Rep. Ellison supports moving Election Day to the weekend, he did not know the answer. In all fairness to the Congressman, most people have no idea why Election Day is on Tuesday.

Some background. Rep. Ellison represents Minnesota’s 5th congressional district. He is a member of Minnesota’s Democratic Farmer-Labor Party. When Rep. Ellison took office in 2007, he became the first muslim to be elected to the United States Congress and the first African-American elected to the House from Minnesota.

Thank you for the great video, Jacob Wheeler! Keep asking the tough questions!

Monday, October 18th, 2010

If You Don’t Vote, You Don’t Count

45 years after the passage of the Voting Rights Act American voter participation ranks near the bottom of all countries in the world. We honor Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s legacy, who fought for and won the passage of the Voting Rights Act, in this new public service for the 2010 midterm elections.

Thursday, September 30th, 2010

Debating Benefits of Early Voting

Early Voting Sign

A conversation about early voting is playing out in the New York Times this week. It started Monday, when chief political correspondent Jeff Zeleny reported that early voting is changing the way political campaigns are waged across the United States, if not voter participation.

The calendar may still say September, but people can begin casting their ballots on Tuesday in Ohio. Voting is already under way in Georgia, Iowa and four other states, with Arizona, California and Illinois set to start in the next two weeks.

[skip]

While people in New York must have an excuse to vote before Election Day, which is why only 5 percent cast absentee ballots in the presidential race two years ago, most states no longer have that restriction. Voting alternatives range from a pure mail-in ballot in Oregon to a three-week period of balloting in Florida, Texas and Nevada.

Early voting has hardly driven all eligible citizens to vote. Turnout has increased only slightly since 2005 when many states began making voting more convenient. But it has made it far easier for campaigns to find voters who would be likely to be supportive if they could get them to the polling place. And with 70 percent of Americans now able to take advantage of no-excuse early and absentee voting, the trend is permanent.

“It’s not going to represent a seismic shift in the number of people voting,” said Dan Tokaji, an Ohio State University law professor who studies early voting and election law. “The convenience of voting is a factor, but it’s not the major reason that people don’t show up to vote.”

Today, the Times has posted an online back-and-forth between columnists Gail Collins and David Brooks about what they see as the downside to early voting: voters may cast a ballot too early, before a big development in the campaign that may cause them to want to take back their vote. (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?