November 6 is election day, 2018... although it might oughtta be renamed "tabulation day" as "early" voting is allowed in almost every jurisdiction. By law, since 1845, federal elections "occur" on the "first Tuesday after the first Monday in November". Ever wonder why? According to Wikipedia,
A uniform date for choosing presidential electors was instituted by the Congress in 1845. ... The actual reasons, as shown in records of Congressional debate on the bill in December 1844, were fairly prosaic. The bill initially set the day for choosing presidential electors on "the first Tuesday in November," in years divisible by four (1848, 1852, etc.). But it was pointed out that in some years the period between the first Tuesday in November and the first Wednesday in December (when the electors are required to meet in their state capitals to vote) would be more than 34 days, in violation of the existing Electoral College law. So, the bill was reworded to move the date for choosing presidential electors to the Tuesday after the first Monday in November, a date scheme already used in New York. The period between Election Day and the first Wednesday in December is always 29 days. The effect of the change was to make November 2 the earliest day on which Election Day may fall.
In 1845, the United States was largely an agrarian society. Farmers often needed a full day to travel by horse-drawn vehicles to the county seat to vote. Tuesday was established as election day because it did not interfere with the Biblical Sabbath or with market day, which was on Wednesday in many towns.
"The franchise" is the most important right in any democracy, since it determines who runs the government, yet it is a right exercised in the United States by one of the lowest populations of modern democracies. The term "democracy" first appeared in ancient Greek political and philosophical thought in the city-state of Athens during classical antiquity. The word comes from demos, "common people" and kratos, strength. Think about that for a moment. The strength of the Nation is in its people. If the people don't exercise that right, we lose it.
Since the inception of the United States, there has been a continuous extension of the franchise - the right to vote. Initially, only white, male property owners could vote. It took more than 100 years before it was extended to non-whites, and nearly two hundred before women enjoyed "suffrage". Four Constitutional Amendments extended the franchise regardless of
"Race, color, or previous condition of servitude" (15th Amendment, 1870);"On account of sex" (19th Amendment, 1920);"By reason of failure to pay any poll tax or other tax" for federal elections (24th Amendment, 1964); "Who are eighteen years of age or older, to vote, shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of age" (26th Amendment, 1971)
Now, however, we are entering a period when a significant effort is underway to reverse this process, both directly and indirectly. The question of the age is: what are we going to do about it?
Vote as if your future depends on it.
** It’s time to make Election Day a national holiday! by Greger
There should be flags, bunting, high school bands, and beauty contests! Fireworks when the polls close! This should be the beer drinking holiday of all beer drinking holidays! The Fourth Of July on steroids...Every two bit carnival in the country should be set up in every town that hires two bit carnivals on Patriotic Holidays. Bake sales, chili cook offs, live bands and foodtrucks! Car shows, bicycle races, and pet parades.
This is not a celebration of history, it's a celebration of our future. As important as the past might be, our future is far far more important. Like the Olympics, it only comes around every other year and we choose our finest to go and represent us!
Election night coverage needs to lose the somber nervous chitchat of newsroom talking heads, the worrisome whining of sour faced interviews of nobody in particular and the bewildered excitement when the numbers start rolling in. Let's turn that boring crap into a game show atmosphere with more glitter and glitz than a Superbowl half time show. More drama than a reality show, and better ratings than any of them. There will be winners and losers across the country, let's hear their stories and meet their families, join with the winners in their joy and the and crushed hopes of the losers. This could be big and it could save our asses as a country because we need to start acting like we really care about our own futures.
“Majorities in both parties favor the idea of making Election Day a national holiday, though Democrats are more likely than Republicans to favor this,” says a new Pew Research Center poll of 10,000 Americans that revealed that, indeed, 59 percent of Republicans and 71 percent of Democrats agree with the idea.
Legislation favoring elections as holidays have been around for a while. Democratic Rep. John Conyers of Michigan introduced a bill in 2005 to designate “Democracy Day” as an election holiday; it drew 110 co-sponsors, all Democrats. Sen. Bernard Sanders of Vermont repeated the call in 2014.
“Election Day should be a national holiday so that everyone has the time and opportunity to vote. While this would not be a cure-all, it would indicate a national commitment to create a more vibrant democracy,” Mr. Sanders said at the time.
Democratic Reps. Donald McEachin of Virginia and Anna G. Eshoo of California introduced the “Election Day Holiday Act” just last month.
The election holiday mood is elsewhere. A recent USA Today op-ed from Archon Fung and Jane Mansbridge, both Harvard University political professors, suggests a new election holiday called Citizen Day, insisting that voting should be “a celebration, not a chore.”
So why isn't election day a holiday? The obvious reason is that the elephant in the room(I'm looking at you GOP) doesn't really want people to vote. If they had their way it would still be the landed gentry only who had any say in the affairs of government. But Republicans are a patriotic bunch, and they like beer as much if not more than Democrats. If the media pitched this a little harder, if it got mentioned more often then I believe that it could happen. There would be some nut and bolt changes...a three day weekend with "Election Day" on Monday and all of the polls open all weekend would be my suggestion if anyone thought to ask...
Loc: Whittier, California
Who knows what has to happen for Martial Law to be imposed? Does the power lie with the POTUS alone or are there other departments that have to sign off?
Since the Posse Comitatus act the President can only declare Martial Law with Congressional approval. Trump, however, probably thinks it can be done with a simple Executive Order, on or after Election Day...or possibly even before.
Would Congress stand up to block his efforts? I don't know, I'm not entirely sure that they would, given past recent experience and observation. Maybe just a tweet?
Some believe that national martial law is unenforceable. To which I say: "Define your terms." Unenforceable, as in "It will not be fiscally feasible to activate enough troops to completely lock down 320 million people"?? Yeah okay, they're probably right if that's the definition we're using.
My definition, on the other hand, is somewhat different:
CHILLING EFFECT - SIGNAL TO VIGILANTES, PRIVATE MILITIA, DOMESTIC TERRORISTS (ahhhh, but I repeat myself) and local law enforcement that extreme measures, up to and including random acts of violence and summary street justice against groups deemed "undesirable" to the Right wing, are now approved.
So called "enforcement" need not be but a fraction of what could be termed "complete" or 100 percent effective, all that is needed is public awareness of the order, either in intent or in outright action, media reaction and civilian response.
Simply uttering his intent to attempt implementation is probably more than enough.
And so with that in mind, I sincerely hope that most of you have already voted by MAIL, as Karen and I have done. We both will be on the road, crisscrossing the country via I-40 during Election Week, on our way to Tulsa, Oklahoma...to dedicate the Leon Russell Memorial Garden. We're maybe a wee bit concerned about the mood of the country as we travel through it during these tense times. So if you don't hear from us again by November 15th, maybe send out the posse and find us.
Please vote. And may God bless this country, and may we be able to summon the numbers to secure the blessings of democracy.
Loc: Whittier, California
Originally Posted By: NW Ponderer
So why isn't election day a holiday? The obvious reason is that the elephant in the room(I'm looking at you GOP) doesn't really want people to vote.
They don't even try to keep it a secret.
Of course, nowadays they reframe the discussion in the fine tradition of Lee Atwater, so now the big issue is "voter fraud" instead...massive invasions of illegals flocking to the polls and furiously pumping the levers over and over again.
As we approached a white woman with gardening shears called out to us. "What are you doing here? You can't do that here." We walked onto her driveway to explain that we were canvassing for Jess King. She said, "I hate Jess King. She's trying to take us to socialism. You can't do that here."
These redneck hooligans are heading south and hoping to shoot some brown people.
Personally I don't know what these caravaners are thinking. This is the worst possible time to seek asylum in the Unites States. Need I remind anyone that the last response of the US Government to refugees was to rip children from the arms of mothers and put them in separate cages in different states. Many will never be reunited. The stated goal of this policy was to discourage future refugees.
Asylum seekers were not discouraged.
This time they are sending armed troops and the president has said they will use deadly force if necessary and that no one will get across.
I understand that their situation in Nicaragua or Honduras or whatever is bad, very very bad. Probably because they elected corrupt assh*les who rolled over for American business interests and destroyed their countries.
We have a similar issue here and, as much as many of us would like to help them, it's just not feasible at this time.
Has anyone pondered the outcome of this coming clash? Does anyone see a happy ending for any of the asylum seekers?
"Be yourself; everyone else is already taken."— Oscar Wilde
The GOP had become so brazen in its vote manipulation (suppression, gerrymandering, voting machine tampering, just plain lying) that, I think, it is causing a reaction within the electorate. Deep down, I think Americans like democracy and I think they are beginning to see that it is under threat. This election may signal how deep that reality has sunk in.