Election Day


  1. (in the U.S.) the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November on which national elections are held for electors of the president and vice president in those years evenly divisible by four. On even years constituents elect members of the House of Representatives for two-year terms and one third of the Senate for six-year terms.
  2. (often lowercase) any day designated for the election of public officials.

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Word History and Origins

Origin of Election Day1

First recorded in 1640–50
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Example Sentences

Only 28 percent of people reported voting on Election Day — less than half of the 60 percent who did so in 2016.

In a poll before Election Day, 75% of Americans voiced concern about violence.

From Time

This scaremongering has proved wildly successful in turning out the base on Election Day.

Workers were supposed to be paid $100 per shift during the early voting period and $250 for volunteering on Election Day, distributed in two separate checks.

States like Pennsylvania and Wisconsin could not begin to process ballots until Election Day, which delayed the final tally.

From Vox

But on Election Day, many chose “yes,” bringing female support to 53 percent, up from 48.

The filled out pledge cards are then mailed back to voters shortly before Election Day as a way to remind them to vote.

After some $4 billion spent on the 2014 midterms, voter turnout is expected to be down again this Election Day.

Four years later, Bush would be aided by the airing of a video by Osama bin Laden, which dropped just before Election Day.

The polls say Republicans will likely eke out a small majority in the Senate this Election Day.

When an election-day comes round now, it takes me back to the time of 1832.

The good Republican set election-day for the happiest holiday of his life, for that would be his wedding-day.

There were sounds of stirring, but no one was trusting that the election-day brawls were completely ended yet.

Liberty is the steam, responsibility the brakes, and election-day, the safety-valve.

It was a repetition, with slight variations, of a village-fair anywhere else, or an election-day in America.


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More About Election Day

What is Election Day?

Election Day (when capitalized this way) is the name used in the U.S. for the day on which national elections are held.

The lowercase election day is used as a general term for any day that an election is held.

In the U.S., national elections involve the election of the president (on years divisible by four) and members of the House of Representatives and Senate (on even years).

However, Election Day also usually involves state and local elections. Voters typically vote on national, state, and local elections using the same ballot. Voting on Election Day has traditionally been done in person at polling places, but many places also allow early and mail voting.

Election Day is a holiday in some states, and some voting advocates have called for Election Day to become a national holiday to make it easier for everyone to vote.

When is Election Day?

In the U.S., Election Day (for national elections) is held on the Tuesday immediately after the first Monday in November. It’s not necessarily the first Tuesday in November—if November started on a Tuesday, for example, Election Day would fall on the second Tuesday.

In 2023, Election Day falls on November 7. In 2024, it falls on November 5.

More information and context on Election Day

In the U.S., the tradition of holding Election Day on a Tuesday in November dates back to 1845, when it was codified by law. The day is thought to have been chosen to accommodate farmers, particularly by avoiding the harvest season, market days, winter weather, and the necessity of traveling to vote during the weekend (since many observed Sunday as a day of worship and rest).

Today, many people often point out that holding election day during a weekday is often prohibitive for those who have to work, especially those who cannot afford to miss work. Voting advocates often cite statistics showing that this disproportionately affects people of color. Some have proposed making Election Day a federal holiday to make it easier for people to vote and to increase voter turnout. In addition, many voting advocates support early voting opportunities and voting by mail, which would allow people to vote without needing to go to a polling place on Election Day.

What are some terms that often get used in discussing Election Day?

How is Election Day discussed in real life?

In the U.S., the capitalized term Election Day refers to the day that national elections are held—it’s always a Tuesday in November. The lowercase term election day can refer to any day on which an election is held.



Try using Election Day!

True or False?

Elections on Election Day can involve both national, state, and local offices.




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