Should Election Day be a national holiday?
1. This year's Election Day is set for November 8 — a Tuesday in the middle of the work week. Work can prevent many Americans from voting. In 2014, 28 percent of those who did not vote said they were "too busy" to make it to the polls. Many states offer early voting and voting by mail, but the United States does not obligate employers to give time off to vote. Declaring Election Day a national holiday would give every citizen plenty of time to cast their ballot.
2. But creating a national holiday might not be enough to boost voter turnout. Hospitals and various businesses still usually operate on holidays. Millions of Americans vote on Election Day. Early voting would still be necessary to avoid long lines. Voting online or by phone would simplify a lot, but there are security concerns. The easiest solution might be extending voting hours. Keeping polling places open past 7 p.m. would give more full-time employees the option to vote after work.
3. So, should Election Day be a national holiday?
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After two nights of violent protests in Charlotte, North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory has declared a state of emergency. The protests began in response to the fatal police shooting of Keith Lamont Scott, a black man. McCrory said he would deploy the state National Guard and Highway Patrol. Charlotte's police chief said 9 people were injured and 44 arrests were made during the riots. Not all protests were violent. Several peaceful protests also took place in the city. Scenes from Charlotte: A state of emergency was declared and the National Guard activated after violent protestshttps://t.co/C7dixVEssP pic.twitter.com/2C9rVXfVnG — BuzzFeed News (@BuzzFeedNews) September 22, 2016
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