The latest email missive from The Nation magazine asks me to lend my support to the Progressive Turnout Project, which is a drive to make election day a national holiday.
Here’s now The Nation explains it:
In 2014, voter turnout hit a 70-year low. This was catastrophic for Democrats.
Republicans gained control of Congress and gave Mitch McConnell and John Boehner (now Paul Ryan) unprecedented ability to advance their right-wing agenda.
But even worse, Democrats lost critical local and state races. In their place, their GOP counterparts went to work passing restrictive suppression laws to make voting more difficult.
Now, voting laws across the country make a trip to the polls virtually impossible for many Democratic-leaning voters.
We must do everything we can to make voting easier—and that begins by making Election Day a national holiday.
Now I think there’s reason to think that making election day a national holiday would backfire on Democrats. Making it easier to vote on a Tuesday holiday will also make it easier for a lot of voters to conjure up a new four-day holiday weekend. Just call in sick on Monday, and voila—spend a late fall weekend up at the lake or at the casino.
In other words, making election day a national holiday might actually drive down Democratic turnout. Hmmm. . . maybe we should give this a try.