I'm a huge fan and advocate of early voting, but even I didn't think the numbers would be this high. Wow.
United States Elections Project:
In the presidential election of 2008, approximately 39.7 million or 30% of all votes were cast prior to Election Day, November 4, 2008. This is a significant increase from 20% in 2004 and part of the upward trend experienced since 1992, when 7% of all votes were cast early. These numbers are likely to increase in subsequent presidential elections as more states adopt early voting and more voters become comfortable with the practice. A summary of these early voting laws can be found at Paul Gronke's excellent Early Voting Center. I discuss the bright future of early voting - among other trends - in this article available at the on-line political science journal, The Forum.
What a beautiful trend line. I hope these numbers keep rising and rising until Congress recognizes that the current system is pretty broken and very antiquated. I'm a fan of declaring Election Day a national holiday and giving everybody the day off to exercise their constitutional right and duty without having to worry about work and whatnot. I'm also a fan of vote-by-mail (see how well it works in Oregon) and expanded Motor Voter efforts. What electoral changes would you like to see?
h/t Markos, who quips, "no more 'election day.'"