Why is Election Day on a Tuesday in November?

- Since the 1840s, the U.S. Congress declared Election Day as the first Tuesday following the first Monday in November. But why?

Medgar Evers College Professor Wallace Ford says Congress didn't want to do Election Day on a Monday, because people would have had to travel on Sunday -- the Sabbath.

So now we know why Tuesday but why November? Because you can't have Election Day during farming season, and then September and October are harvest season and December is too cold.

One organization says voter turn-out may once again be abysmal and the reason is an obvious one. If voting were held on a weekend or made into a holiday, turnout would be far higher, says William Wachtel, the co-founder of whytuesday.org, an organization dedicated to "fixing our voting system."

Voters we spoke to believe Election Day should be declared a holiday. In recent presidential elections, only about 60 percent of those eligible to vote actually vote.

But with an election as exciting and controversial as this one has been, perhaps voter turn-out may also be unprecedented.

Up Next:

Up Next

  • Why is Election Day on a Tuesday in November?
  • Budget office: Senate health bill adds 22 million uninsured
  • Man convicted of 2nd-degree murder in 'Baby Doe' case
  • Tourists brutally attacked, robbed in New Orleans
  • Brutal attack caught on camera
  • Suspect hands 'Get out of jail free' Monopoly card to deputy
  • Man stabs parents over lack of air conditioning, court documents show
  • Trump travel ban partly reinstated; fall court arguments set
  • SoCal father buries wrong man after coroner's mistake
  • Texas' first certified therapy dog offers comfort to mourners