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OpEd: Voting for one day on a week day is absolutely whacked(19 posts)

OpEd: Voting for one day on a week day is absolutely whacked128
Nov 5, 2002 10:52 AM
and a clear sign how stupid we are. Convince me I'm wrong, but why are the polls not open for say 72 hours straight through a Thurs-Sat?? Any reason we can't do that? And don't throw me the administrative public/private cost argument (a good one granted, but a detail, there is always money for priorities) after 1 billion u.s. was just spent on 'campaign advertising'. Maybe a hundred years ago one day voting made sense...but now?
And we have the audacity to CLOSE POLLS while people stand in line to vote?
"I'd like to help ya son, but you're too late to vote!"

Just for a day I'd love to tag along and listen to their thoughts while the 1st continental congress (in friendly ghost form) marched around the modern day Union checking out our progress and stuff, in comparison with their big plan...
Agree, but . . .ms
Nov 5, 2002 10:55 AM
There is a way to get around having to vote on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November -- vote by absentee ballot.
Because voting was invented in a colony with 13 residents.Kristin
Nov 5, 2002 11:32 AM
You know America has never been great at playing the expansion game.
huh?mr_spin
Nov 5, 2002 11:47 AM
Polls are in your local neighborhood. They are open from 7am to 8pm. Federal law requires that employers give employees up to two hours off to vote.

What is the problem?

They make it easy and you still can't make it? Try planning ahead and going absentee. Otherwise, if you can't make it, you don't deserve it.
I don't like your attitude Skippy. One of those 'miss the point'128
Nov 5, 2002 12:25 PM
types. Point: the system needs updating for a civic duty of this magnitude.

local polls: ever think MAYBE people work outside the'hood?.
7-8 ain't long enough.
Federal law requires: some people are self employed, business demands etc.
Whats the problem: Been under a rock lately?
"They make it easy"- who are they, that make what for us? We are them.
Planning ahead: update the system, so we won't have such need to scheme ahead and in retrospect. Read the paper lately.
Going absentee: shouldn't be a necc'y workround, that's for absentees only. Many are less inclined to make that effort.

If you can't make it, you don't deserve it: First of all, the single meaningful word in that sentence is 'it', and I am certain you are unable to define and defend'it' in that context, secondly thats some plain old fkd up shit imnsho...

Your point (I think): there are ways around the obstacles. My point: there are obstacles which need to be removed.

Sure there is complacency, but for that one deserves a kick in the ass, not a diminution of rights....
I don't really caremr_spin
Nov 5, 2002 12:43 PM
You are the obstacle. You are one of those "I never have enough time" excuse making types. Sorry, if voting is important to you, you will make the time.

If you are self-employed, it's pretty easy to find 20-30 minutes between 7am and 8pm. Don't you eat lunch?

Business demands? Demands that keep you occupied from 7am to 8pm? I think whoever you are doing business with will understand if you tell them you have to vote. If you have to go out of town, what makes you think you won't go out of town from Thursday to Sunday?

My point: if we change it to Thursday thru Sunday, you'll still find an excuse to complain. Why can't it be Monday thru Sunday, you'll say, I'm going away that weekend. Why can't the polls be open 24 hours? Why do I have to go down to the poll place? Why can't you come to my house?....
All of this passion and you don't believe in voting? (nm)Kristin
Nov 5, 2002 1:16 PM
who says I don't believe in voting?mr_spin
Nov 5, 2002 1:26 PM
I think there is very little worth voting for right now in my state, California. That's totally different from not believing in voting.
"Same old, same old. Candidates and issues, bought and paid for."Kristin
Nov 5, 2002 2:12 PM
This quote makes it sound as if you think the entire political system is a waiste of energy. I would be surprised to see someone at the polls if they really believed this.
the real storymr_spin
Nov 5, 2002 2:27 PM
I don't vote for the entire political system. No one does, unless they live in Iraq. I just vote for a small part of it, and the part of it I vote for TODAY is mostly a waste of energy.
You make good points I am with you. Vote for changeMorgan
Nov 5, 2002 2:15 PM
Fire That Gray Davis bastard.

Morgan
fresno
not very persuasivetrekkie1
Nov 5, 2002 2:32 PM
You have over 12 hours to vote; your employer must give you time to vote if necessary; and can also vote by absentee ballot; any idiot can easily vote if they want to. That's the status quo; I think it's up to you to be persuasive of the need for change.

I think it is fair to assume that what you really want is more stupid, lazy people having an increased opportunity to vote. Right?
No, I want more people to engage the system and have a128
Nov 6, 2002 8:24 AM
voting system to accomodate that increase in volume. (My initial thought in this regard was simple math: we would be unable to accomodate all voters with the current system. And that offended my sense of good planning)
I want to increase turnout by changing the culure of politics from a reactionary to participatory process, and I want to change the culture of politics from a winner take all mentality to a culture of fairness/economy (in the Rawlsian/Posner sense), and I want Rock um Sock um Robots for Christmas...
But hey, if the current system works in relation to turnout, fine. But looking at the issue of 'we all need to vote', well if we tried we apparently couldn't in one day!

So I don't really know where to go with the 'stupid lazy people' comment, but no, not a fair or correct assumption...
Believe it or not, people study these things,TJeanloz
Nov 5, 2002 2:44 PM
If you will recall, there was a movement a few years ago to make election day a Federal holiday and require employers to give the day off (there was a hubbub because it was proposed that it be combined with Veterans Day, and Veterans groups didn't want to lose any of the spotlight). A study was conducted, and they determined that fewer people would vote if they had the day off, because they would plan all-day events (travel, long weekends, etc.), or find something better to do with their new-found 'free' time.

If you are too busy to vote, an absentee ballot is for you; it is designed for people who will not be able to vote in person, and if you are too busy to vote in person (as I am, because my job is quite far from my legal residence), you can submit a ballot by mail.
Makes sense.Hard to beat human nature. I have plenty of time128
Nov 6, 2002 5:54 AM
to vote, and did. Seems posters are quick to tell me what I think; I'm just thinking outloud, as it occured to me, the system may be better designed to handle the possibility that everyone will vote, and then overbuild the system. As for getting people to the polls, that's a cultural shift that ought to occur and politicians don't do enough to encourage that shift, if fact by playing off people's fear and emotions (negative ads work, again human nature hard to beat) they work against drawing people into the system and succeed only in making (too often) a charade of the exercise....

I'm amazed at how close the national split is between Dems and Reps, right down the middle. Why is there no overwhelming majority? Seems...a little too convenient...don't you think!
human naturetrekkie1
Nov 6, 2002 7:48 AM
One problem with extended voting is that exit polls and preliminary results might strongly influence the results for the remaining voters. If in the first day of voting it is reported that x party is way ahead, the y party voters planning to vote on the third day might not bother, or it might cause the y party to push extra hard to get out the vote to counter the early x party results. I suppose you could ban any reporting of preliminary counts, but you can't ban polls -- First Amendment.

The even split is because the party positions and individual candidate positions are not fixed. The are fluid and dynamic. As there is a perception of a more conservative movement, for example, the more liberal candidates will modify their positions, at least public positions, to capture more of the middle. This is ongoing and natural.
Oregon, everyone votes by mail. nmBrooks
Nov 6, 2002 4:39 PM
If you are in line when the polls close you still get to vote.MB1
Nov 6, 2002 5:57 AM
That is the way it works everywhere I have ever voted.

BTW don't forget since we live in a Democracy we are the system.

Don't like something? Work hard, get out the vote and change it.

OMO
exactly..if you are in line when the polls close, you vote NMClydeTri
Nov 6, 2002 7:14 AM
nm