House Dems Want to Make Election Day a Federal Holiday

Automatic voter registration, super PAC restrictions and redistricting commissions—those are just a few of the voting rights and anti-corruption measures introduced this past week by the new Democratic majority in the U.S. House of Representatives.

As part of the unprecedented overhaul package, which includes a bill that would force President Donald Trump to release his tax returns, Rep. Anna Eshoo (D-Palo Alto) introduced legislation to make election day a federal holiday.

In an announcement of her proposal, the South Bay congresswoman cites a 2014 study showing that, among those who didn't vote, 35 percent said they shirked the civic duty because of work or school. The Election Holiday Act, HR 294, would free up potentially millions more citizens to participate in our democracy.

“People should not be forced to choose between their job or family and exercising their right to vote,” Eshoo said in a news release Wednesday. “At a time when our democracy needs to be strengthened, and when many states are restricting access to the ballot box, it’s more important than ever for Congress to reaffirm our commitment to the most fundamental aspect of democracy, the right to vote. Strong voter turnout is essential to a healthy democracy, and this [bill] ensures more voices are heard in the political process.”

Congressman Donald McEachin, a Democrat from Richmond, Virginia, co-authored the bill, which he and Eshoo initially introduced in 2018 with 30 other co-sponsors.

“We must do all we can to remove barriers to the ballot box,” McEachin said in a joint press release. “The right to vote is sacred and should be protected. Our democracy depends on this fundamental principle.”

21 Comments

    • I don’t know, doesn’t look like they’re getting paid at all these days, so you tell me, genius.

        • And Mexico is going to pay for the shutdown costs, right?

          What ever happened to that? Chumps forget the second half of the promise? “…and Mexico is going to pay for it!”

  1. Why don’t we talk about all those anti corruption measures? Automatic voter registration, super PAC restrictions and redistricting commissions are on the table. They all sound good to me, but for republicans, it seems that corruption and suppressing the vote is the only way they can get elected anymore.

    All those old, angry white guys, some day, they’ll die off like the dinosaurs, but we have to make sure they don’t screw things up too much before then.

    • > Why don’t we talk about all those anti corruption measures?

      An excellent idea, Mr. Resident. One of your best ideas ever.

      Why don’t we talk about AB1921, signed by former Governor Jerry Brown.

      https://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/billNavClient.xhtml?bill_id=201520160AB1921

      It allows third parties to “harvest” ballots provided to voters and deliver the ballots to ballot collecting centers.

      The voted ballots are placed inside of envelopes which are annotated on the outside with the voter’s name and address.

      The third party ballot harvesters could easily and inexpensively obtain voter registration lists from the Registrar of voters and identify the party registration of the voter.

      Suppose the third party vote harvesters were secret Trump supporters and determined that some of the envelopes they were transporting were cast by registered Democrats. Suppose the ballot transporters were sufficiently careless and inattentive that they lost some of the Democrat ballots.

      Would you consider such a system of third party ballot harvesting to be a “corrupt” election practice?

      Should the supermajority Democrat legislature and Governor-For-Life Gavin Newsom do something to reform this corrupt practice?

      Should they invalidate any elections where third party ballot harvesting occurred?

      Should third party ballot harvesting, as practiced in California, be subjected to “anti-corruption measures”?

      Your opportunity for some compelling dialogue, Mr. Resident.

    • > All those old, angry white guys, some day, they’ll die off like the dinosaurs, but we have to make sure they don’t screw things up too much before then.

      Mr. Resident:

      Here’s some old angry white guys trying to screw things up in California:

      https://www.judicialwatch.org/press-room/press-releases/california-and-los-angeles-county-to-remove-1-5-million-inactive-voters-from-voter-rolls-settle-judicial-watch-federal-lawsuit/

      “California and Los Angeles County to Remove 1.5 Million Inactive Voters from Voter Rolls – Settle Judicial Watch Federal Lawsuit”

      Do you think that having more names on the voter rolls than there are eligible voters might lead to corrupt elections, and might be worthy of some “anti-corruption measures”?

      • JudicialWatch, really? That self-described “conservative, non-partisan” (wait, what?) organization reeks of partisanship, evidenced by the . And yeah, here are the angry old white guys:
        https://www.judicialwatch.org/about/board-of-directors/
        Only three people on the board? That’s a pretty small set of directors.

        Thanks for continuing to clue us in on where your eyeballs go, bubble.

        • > Only three people on the board? That’s a pretty small set of directors.

          > Thanks for continuing to clue us in on where your eyeballs go, bubble.

          Mr. Resident:

          Your mind is wandering. You were about to give us a really cogent and perceptive insight on the significance of 1.5 million “inactive voters” being removed from the voter rolls in Los Angeles County, and then you somehow became distracted and started talking about three person boards of directors.

          Would you like to drink a cup of calming tea, collect your thoughts, focus, and give it another try?

          “California and Los Angeles County to Remove 1.5 Million Inactive Voters from Voter Rolls”

          Deep breath. You can do this:

          • Let’s get back to that term “harvest”. That’s a dog whistle word, buddy. The word “harvest” isn’t used in AB1921 at all, but you sure liked it. In fact that bill talks specifically about vote by mail ballots. Most people would rationally use the USPS to return their vote by mail ballots. No, I don’t think there’s much risk of voter fraud (another right-wing dog whistle) with AB1921.

            > Would you like to drink a cup of calming tea
            I think you need to smoke some calming tea. It’s legal in California now, too, so again, little risk.

    • Automatic voter registration has already proven to be a “pro corruption” measure, because the DMV registered some 1500 non-citizens for the November election.

  2. Considering that most election decisions are essentially made during the June primary, thanks to the “top two” system, can the legislature make the June primary election a state holiday?

  3. With early voting and vote by mail this is totally a sham to get as many extra votes for the pro-corrupt Democrat party.
    Democracy is just another term for tyranny by the majority, we know this because that’s what Democrats call it when Republicans are the majority. However these same people trash the electoral vote when it suits them. Gerrymandering
    is only Gerrymandering when it benefits a Republican even when Democrats drew the lines.

    It is the law in most places that an employer give the employee time on that Tuesday to go vote. We really don’t have a problem with voter suppression but for places like California that have created a one party system = Voter Oppression
    No need for Republicans to show up and vote there are only Demorats to vote for.

    People should not be forced to vote for the party of the Enemy of Freedom weather they get the day off or not.

  4. > Let’s get back to that term “harvest”. That’s a dog whistle word, buddy.

    It’s not my term, Mr. Resident. The official First Amendment Protected privately owned American Mainstream Media used the term “ballot harvesting.”

    ‘Splain how “harvest” is a “dog whistle”. That one is over my head.

    > No, I don’t think there’s much risk of voter fraud (another right-wing dog whistle) with AB1921.

    You’re a very trusting individual. You trust that you’re going to get every nickel of your public employee pension, your Medicare for all, and your fast, quiet, and comfortable ride on the California Bullet Train in 2045?

    Yes?

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