Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) is proposing a new bill — again — to make election day a national holiday.
Sanders uses voter turnout during midterm elections as his reasoning for wanting “to make it easier to participate in the political process."
Here’s Sanders’ full reasoning, according to his Senate website:
Nationwide, preliminary indications are that the total turnout for the 2014 elections was only 36.6 percent, according to the United States Elections Project at the University of Florida.
In America, we should be celebrating our democracy and doing everything possible to make it easier for people to participate in the political process. 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.
We should not be satisfied with a "democracy" in which more than 60 percent of our people don't vote and some 80 percent of young people and low-income Americans fail to vote. We can and must do better than that. While we must also focus on campaign finance reform and public funding of elections, establishing an Election Day holiday would be an important step forward.
Details of the bill are scarce since the link to read Sanders’ bill on his website leads to nothing but blank space. However, I did say “again” at the top of the article. That’s because this isn’t the first time Sanders has proposed this measure.
Sanders previously introduced the “Democracy Day Act of 2014,” which also called for election day to designated as a “public holiday.” There’s not much to the bill except for the election day holiday proposal.
Detractors of the bill include Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), who indicated that this move would only show partisan benefits.
"Just what America needs,” McConnell said, according to MarketWatch, “a bunch of government workers being paid to go out and work for, I assume ... our colleagues on the other side, on their campaigns."
What do you think? Should election day be recognized as a national holiday? Let us know in the comments.
H/T: Chicks on the Right