Have you have ever considered why we vote on a Tuesday? Probably not. It is something we do. It has been that way since we began voting, so it is just what we do.
Recently, WindsorCTVotes successfully petitioned the Town Council to change to a weekend voting date for the referendum on the Windsor High School roof. WindsorCTVotes believed that such a move had the potential to increase voter turnout. Data provided by Who Actually Votes in America indicates that among the top reasons voters give for why they don’t vote is that they are too busy.
Weekend voting might suggest that given reduced restraints to work and school commitments (especially for working parents) that weekend voting would be more accessible to voters. The numbers for the roof referendum were underwhelming. It is hard to pinpoint why with certainty (it was a new voting day, I didn’t know, it was a stand alone issue which many assumed wouldn’t be contested/threatened). Nonetheless, what we heard most often was “I was too busy. I had a lot going on that weekend.”
Jacob Soboroff, the executive director of the group “Why Tuesday” (a group advocating for weekend voting for national elections) offers this explanation to the question of why Tuesday on the group's Website: "In 1845, Tuesday was the most convenient day. It could take a day or longer for farmers to get to the county seat to vote, and Tuesday allowed them this time without interfering with the Sabbath or Wednesday, which was market day.” So, we vote on Tuesday for archaic reasons.
Soboroff further contends that Tuesday voting is more challenging for some voters, particularly single parents, those who work more than one job and students.
In March, Connecticut Representative John Larson introduced the Weekend Voting Act to move Election Day from a Tuesday to the weekend. The act recommends that polls be open from 10 AM ET on the first Saturday of the month through 6 PM ET on the first Sunday in the 48 contiguous states.
WindsorCTVotes lauds this national proposal and will continue to advocate locally for weekend voting.