The United States trails most developed countries in voter turnout.

It's true. Compared to most other developed nations with democratically elected leadership, U.S. voter turnout rates are especially low. In fact, when the Pew Research Center studied the most recent nationwide elections for overall turnout, they determined that the U.S. placed 26th out of 32 member nations from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), most of whose members are highly developed, democratic states.

In the last mid-term election, turnout was dismal. Just 36.4 percent of the voting-eligible population cast ballots, according to the projection from the United States Elections Project. That's down from the 41 percent in 2010, and was the lowest turnout rate in 70 years.

According to a comprehensive study from the Pew Research Center, the single most common reason that nonvoters gave, and have given for decades, was that they simply did not have time to vote due to work or school conflicts. That's where you come in.

 

why does holding Elections on a workday decrease turnout?

 
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VOTING ON TUESDAY

In 1845, when we rode horses and buggies, and before Florida, California, and Texas were states or slavery had been abolished, Congress needed to pick a time for Americans to vote. Americans required three days to ride to the nearest polls, two days to pray, and one day for trading at the market. And so, Tuesday was the most convenient day for most Americans to vote... 173 years ago.

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STATE LAWS

There's no federal law that governs time off to vote, and only twenty-three states require paid time off to vote. The following states don't have any voting leave laws on the books at all: Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Idaho, Indiana, Louisiana, Maine, Michigan, Montana, New Hampshire, New Jersey, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Vermont and Virginia.

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VOTING LINES

Voting lines cost Americans $544 million in lost productivity and wages in 2012. That year, some American citizens waited 7 hours in line to vote, creating a kind of feedback loop for those less able to sacrifice their wages, who therefore stay away from polling places. One study estimated that long lines deterred at least 730,000 Americans from voting in November 2012.

 
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Nearly 100 million Americans didn't vote in the 2016 election.