Election Day 2012: Information, Voter Eligibility, Candidate Info
Election Day 2012 is November 6, 2012.
Who are you going to vote for? How to decide who to vote for
It’s just as important that you are familiar with the races on your local ballot so you can make informed decisions. Most state election sites have a list of candidates or a sample ballot. This can help you become familiar with who is running for office.
If you want to learn more about the candidates’ views on topics that matter to you, then you might want to check the candidates’ websites or a voter guide. The League of Women Voters, a nonpartisan political organization, produces an online voter guide where you can find a sample ballot, candidates’ answers to specific questions, and links to the candidates’ websites.
There are many organizations that produce voter guides to encourage voting for certain candidates based on the priorities of the group, such as the environment or health care. These organizations may be able to help you find information about the candidates’ positions on issues that matter to you.
Many state and local organizations, such as newspapers, also produce voter guides. These can be a good way to find additional information about local issues of interest.
If you are unsure of where to look for information about a candidate or want to find a local voter guide, check with your local public library.
Is Election Day a Holiday?
Election Day is not a federal holiday but it is a yearly or biennial holiday in some states, including:
- West Virginia
Employees in some states have the legal right to have time off work to vote, and in some cases, without losing any pay.
Since most residents of rural America had to travel a significant distance to the county seat in order to vote, Monday was not considered reasonable since many people would need to begin travel on Sunday. This would, of course, have conflicted with Church services and Sunday worship.
Why is Election Day the First Tuesday of November?
Lawmakers wanted to prevent election day from falling on the first of November for two reasons. First, November 1st is All Saints Day, a Holy Day of Obligation for Roman Catholics. Second, most merchants were in the habit of doing their books from the preceding month on the 1st. Apparently, Congress was worried that the economic success or failure of the previous month might prove an undue influence on the vote!
Are you eligible to vote?
In almost all states, you can register by mail to vote using the National Mail Voter Registration Form. North Dakota, Wyoming, American Samoa, Guam, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands do not accept the National Mail Voter Registration Form. New Hampshire accepts it only as a request for an absentee voter mail-in registration form. If you live in one of these states, please check with your state election office to find out how to register to vote.
You may also use the National Mail Voter Registration Form to update your registration if you changed your name, to change your address, or to register with a political party.
You may be able to apply to register to vote in person at the following public facilities:
- State or local voter registration and/or election offices
- The department of motor vehicles
- Public assistance agencies
- Armed services recruitment centers
- State-funded programs that serve people with disabilities
- Any public facility that a state has designated as a voter registration agency
In some states, you can also register online to vote. To learn if your state offers online voter registration, please contact your state election office.