How would you change the way we hold elections?
September 24th, 2012
03:15 PM ET

How would you change the way we hold elections?

By CNN's Jack Cafferty:

Election Day is six weeks from tomorrow, but tens of millions of Americans will actually cast their ballot before November 6.

Early voting has already started - and by the end of the month voters in 30 states will be able to cast absentee ballots or vote early in person.

This includes voters in key swing states like Iowa, North Carolina, Virginia, Wisconsin, and New Hampshire.

It's expected that more than one-third of voters - or more than 40 million americans - will vote early this year. According to Politico, in 2008, early and absentee voters made up more than half of all voters in some states. In Colorado, 79% of people voted early.

And that's not lost on the candidates. In a tight race, early votes could make the difference in who wins the White House.

Both the Obama and Romney campaigns are working to get their voters out early. It's something the president's campaign did very well last time around..

Early voting has also changed the way candidates and their campaigns approach the elections - and us.

For starters, it's not worth saving up all those precious advertising dollars until the last days and weeks of the campaign if one in three voters will have voted by then.

Also, it increases pressure on the candidates since any gaffe or controversy that happens now could be the last thing early voters remember before they cast their ballot.

And with modern technology and all the problems that can happen at the polls on election day, it seems fair to ask why we even have an Election Day where people have to go to the polls.

Here’s my question to you: How would you change the way we hold elections?

Tune in to the Situation Room at 5pm to see if Jack reads your answer on air.

And, we love to know where you’re writing from, so please include your city and state with your comment.

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Filed under: 2012 Election • Election Process • Elections
soundoff (155 Responses)
  1. Richard Texas

    The first thing I would do is guarantee that people who vote are not buried in a cemetery some place. When you register to vote you should have to give a finger print and each time you vote that finger is scanned to verify your eligibility. That way you assure one vote per eligible person per election and it is verified by the automatic fingerprint scan. You won't need an ID or voters card just your finger.

    September 24, 2012 at 1:11 pm |
  2. Paul From Austin Texas

    Get rid of the electoral vote and make our elections pure popular vote wins the election not by the chosen few. We may not like what we get but at least we all asked for whoever.

    September 24, 2012 at 1:15 pm |
  3. Pete in Georgia

    Well, FIRST I would mandate election date to be the 1st day after income tax due date.................April 18, to let voters remember clearly how really corrupt our tax system is. Next election dates should be for TWO straight days, not one. More voter turnout the better. Lastly, insist on a LEGITIMATE, HONEST voter registration for LEGAL and ALIVE voters only. Put some honest effort into stopping rampant voter fraud.

    September 24, 2012 at 1:16 pm |
  4. Richard Texas

    I would not allow political contributions of any kind. You would be elected on your own merits and if you have no merits you won' be able to buy any either. I would also ban any advertisement that is not completely truthful. That is a very big problem in America with half truths and omissions of facts and data to prove it. A politician or super pact committee can air anything they want and then it is up to the viewer to sort through the lies to find a shred of truth if it exists. Many people end up being duped into voting by these fraudulent advertisements.

    September 24, 2012 at 1:17 pm |
  5. Charles

    Asolutely no campaigning until 90 days before election. It is ludicrous that campaigning starts the day after election day for the next election. If we continue on this venue we should have part time Congress and pay them accordingly.

    September 24, 2012 at 1:21 pm |
  6. bonnie from NJ

    I am sure this answer will be almost universal, but get rid of the electoral college, it is archaic and unfair. In states where it is all or nothing, if 49% voted for the losing candidate and all the electoral votes go to the winner, how does that truly represent the voting public. Also, let independents vote in primiaries, in my state we cannot. Get rid of Citizens United and make all candidates share the same amount of money, so perhaps someone who is not mega rich can run. Mostly, though TERM LIMITS, TERM LIMITS. TERM LIMITS

    September 24, 2012 at 1:31 pm |
  7. Mel - Houston

    Presonally, I think the election should be a two day event on Saturday and Sunday. Aside from that minor tweak to the law just make sure that the federal Voter Rights Act trumps any crazy state law. The states should be able to make any law that controls the elections of local or state offices. The federal government should control the elections of the President, Senators and House of Representatives.

    September 24, 2012 at 1:34 pm |
  8. Cliff Glass - Rego Park, New York


    To start with, how about all day Saturday and Sunday weekend voting ? Election Tuesdays was a compromise to an agrarian 18th century America to allow farmers to vote on their way home after bringing their goods to market. For good measure, lets add mandatory voting with a none of the above option that could result in a special election with a new slate of candidates. Somes the lesser of two evils, particularly in local elections, is no choice at all.

    September 24, 2012 at 1:39 pm |
  9. Susan

    No one should be able to campaign for office until the year of the election.
    It's idiotic that people start campaigning for re-election the day after they're elected instead of doing the job they were elected to in the first place.
    With all the means we have to communicate there should be no reason to start a campaign more than 6 months before an election.

    September 24, 2012 at 1:40 pm |
  10. Gary in San Jose, California

    Eliminate the Electoral College. I can see how it was necessary in the 1700's and 1800's but in today's day and age it seems kind of archaic.

    September 24, 2012 at 1:43 pm |
  11. John McCormick - Charleston, SC

    Abolish the Electoral College

    Straight Popular Vote

    September 24, 2012 at 1:45 pm |
  12. Randy

    Saturday and Sunday of the first weekend in November is set aside for voting. Paper ballots with receipts to every voting citizen. Minimum of ten years in state prison for tampering and any form of voter suppression in any election. Public financing of elections. Limited access to public airwaves at no cost to each candidate. And ten years in prison for bribery of public officials and forfeiture of half of your assets.

    September 24, 2012 at 1:48 pm |
  13. Paul, Parry Sound, Ontario

    Limit the campaign to six weeks and use pencil and paper ballots. Works here in Canada.

    September 24, 2012 at 1:49 pm |
  14. Jen, seatle wa

    I would allow 3rd party independents on the ballot in all 50 states. Right now 2 party monopolized judges deny us rights of choossing more than 1 candidate in opposition.the media denies all 3rd party candidates at debates. We have the biggest manipulated perception of democracy in history and we suffer for it..

    September 24, 2012 at 1:50 pm |
  15. Ed from California

    I would hold the elections on the weekends, when most people are off in order to make it a lot more convenient, And that way, no excuses!! Or, I would make "Election Day'...all election days, a federal holiday, again....no excuses!!. All business' would be closed in order to vote. Now, I'm not old enough to remember.....but, I thought it used to be that way. Hell, it used to be most business' were closed on Sunday, even here in sunny California.

    September 24, 2012 at 1:50 pm |
  16. D from NY

    I'm a simple person. If I ran the country, there would be a standard process across the nation for Federal elections, with no early voting or caucuses. In Primaries, you would only be able to vote for your party, and primaries would be held on the same day for all states. You would not be able to show up and change your affiliation for a day. I would also get rid of the electoral college. OK, maybe I'm a simpleton.

    September 24, 2012 at 1:58 pm |
  17. jk in MN

    Make sure ALL americans' right to vote is protected at the FEderal level to stop these obvious state level attempts to disenfranchise voters.

    September 24, 2012 at 2:01 pm |
  18. Steve, Clifton, Virginia

    I would employ bio technology to register voters, at locations of the voter choice, for the three years prior to elections and Americans would be able to vote on any computer anywhere in the country or on the globe with a simple finger print touch or a scan of the eye. I would also hold elections over a three day weekend by designating Monday as an official elections holiday where both Government , at all levels , and industry would be required to honor

    September 24, 2012 at 2:04 pm |
  19. ChadC

    Simple: constit. Amend. Unlimited $ from individual registered voters. Full immediate disclosure. $ can't be raised or spent 9 mos before election. No group may adv. election or defeat of candidate! Done.

    September 24, 2012 at 2:04 pm |
  20. Dave Laguna Niguel, CA

    If you don't have skin in the game you don't get to vote. If you don't pay taxes you don't get to vote for those who determine who pays the taxes, how much they pay or how it will be spent.

    September 24, 2012 at 2:07 pm |
  21. David Gerstenfeld

    Jack, The answer is similar to changing to a fair flat tax. Why waste time answering that question since those that have the power to improve systems that are beneficial to most Americans are pressured not to by the powers that get them elected & then re-elected. It Ain't gonna happen in our lifetime.
    David, Las Vegas

    September 24, 2012 at 2:12 pm |
  22. Doug Ericson

    This is an easy question for me, because I have already thought of the perfect solution. My idea is to eliminate the politicians, and to have the big special interest groups appoint a board of Lobbyist to make the laws. The bigger and more powerful the interest group, the more lobbyist they get to appoint. The boss of the biggest special interest group would get to be President. At the end of every year, the table would be reset, by replacing the lobbyist representing declining special interest groups with ones on the rise. The checks and balances will be achieved, by handing out jail terms to all the Lobbyist, if they don't meet the peoples expectations. An approval rarting below 30% would mean automatic lifetime prison terms.Doug, Pepperell, MA.

    September 24, 2012 at 2:14 pm |
  23. Kade in Ames

    Get rid of parties completely. Having parties divides America because the candidates have to jump through hoops to please their parties. Instead of voting for people that might have good ideas about tough issues we vote for which party most reflects how we feel about issues. For example, if Mitt didn't have to win over the republicans we would have two candidates that approve of Obamney-care. Then we could pick them based off of the issues they actually disagree on. Such as whether those who are ahead should pay more so the government can help those who are underwater. Getting rid of the parties would reward middle of the road politics and who pleases the most people instead of who pleases their right wing or left wing agenda. Can you tell I dislike the extremist?

    September 24, 2012 at 2:15 pm |
  24. Pat, Idaho

    I do everything humanly possible to vote every presidential election, but I would like to know that my vote is truly counted. Every election since the Kennedy election, i've had the unwanted feeling that my vote hasn't counted nor has anybody else's for that fact, I believe that BIG business and all the BIG money people have bought and paid for every president since the Kennedy election, including him have been put into office and removed from office when so needed. I'm neither Dem. or Rep. I vote for whom I feel will do the best job, just seems like big business and big money people seem to benifit from these elections. What about the little man??

    September 24, 2012 at 2:15 pm |
  25. Steve, Clifton, Virginia

    I would employ bio technology to identify to register voters, at locations of the voter choice, for the three years prior to elections and Americans would be able to vote on any computer anywhere in the country or on the globe with a simple finger print touch or a scan of the eye. I would also hold elections over a three day weekend by designating Monday as an official elections holiday where both Government , at all levels , and industry would be required to honor


    September 24, 2012 at 2:19 pm |
  26. Greg in Arkansas

    The simplest "fix" to the problems associated with elections would be to require all Political Action Committees and Political Party Committees to SPLIT their contributions between incumbents and challengers.
    This would level the playing field for any "new blood" to enter politics without having to rely on their own "deep pockets" or be obliged to a special interest group.

    Political Action Committees are so interested in keeping an entrenched incumbent that they spend the majority of their funds to protect friendly career politicians rather than attract new candidates with new ideas.

    Over the past 30 years, many good people that would have made great elected officials have been knocked out races because of the lack of money and it now appears that nearly every elected office is FOR SALE to the highest bidder.

    September 24, 2012 at 2:20 pm |
  27. Jenna Roseville CA

    How would you change the way we hold elections?

    1.Vote By Mail for ALL – Homeless can get a ballot from Post Office, State Election Office, etc. Ballots completed and returned by Nov 1st – Results announced Dec 1st.

    2. Allow those who have completed their parole to Vote – they have completed their time and are a member of society

    3. Get rid of the Electoral College – it's no longer needed

    Roseville CA

    September 24, 2012 at 2:22 pm |
  28. lou

    We start off by paying congress, the senate, and the president a low base salary; say, $4 bucks an hour like others in the service industry. Then we set up a tip jar at each of the polling stations. They get to pool the tip money and split it amongst themselves. Makes you wonder if our service and their job performance would improve.

    September 24, 2012 at 2:25 pm |
  29. Wilhelm in Las Vegas

    I think the MOST important thing for the integrity of the elections is that EVERY computer voting machine have a paper trail. way too EASY to hack ANY computer system.

    September 24, 2012 at 2:30 pm |
  30. Loren, Chicago

    The problem is not elections, but what happens after the election. What do we hear constantly during campaigns: promises by politicians to do something, whether or not it can be done legally or practically. What happens after elections: actions by politicians that can't be paid for. It would be nice to think that the election is the problem, but how do you put a truth filter on a politician's mouth?

    September 24, 2012 at 2:36 pm |
  31. Brad, Portland, OR

    I'd get rid of the Electoral College and make it a straight-line popular vote.

    I'd also get rid of state-by-state primaries... there's no reason that Iowa should be filtering candidates for the whole nation.

    Instead, I'd have a series of nation-wide primary votes a few months apart. In the first vote, the country would winnow the contenders down to the top 6. The next vote, the top 3. The last primary vote, the single contender for each party, who would go up against each other on Nov. 6. Having the elections months apart would give candidates time to campaign.

    Or heck, get rid of parties entirely, and just winnow the candidates down to the top two vote-getters, then determine the final winner in the Nov. 6 vote. If parties were irrelevant, you could even end up with 2 conservative candidates running against each other in November, for example.

    September 24, 2012 at 2:38 pm |
  32. David Edenden (Toronto)

    Limit of two six year terms for federal, state and locals politicians to reduce the role of money in politics.

    Federal, state and local elections would be held, separately, every two years to give politicians signals that they are on the right or wrong track. If the federal governing party goes too far to the left or the right, it would suffer in the next state and local elections.

    The Senate is the greatest deliberative, useless and undemocratic body on the face of the planet earth. Abolish it and save "X" dollars over ten years and help eliminate gridlock.

    Don't thank me now, thank me later.

    September 24, 2012 at 2:40 pm |
  33. Ken in Pinon Hills, California

    Eliminating campaign contributions and super PAC's would be a dramatic step in improving a more democratic election. But alas, those who could get the public's ear are the media who could press the issue, but the broadcasters are taking in billions of dollars in revenue from those trying to buy our government. Who is going to cast the first stone against themselves?

    September 24, 2012 at 2:42 pm |
  34. Phyllis G Williams

    How would you change the way we hold elections?

    Let the people "know that the Most High ruleth in the kingdom of Men,
    and giveth it to whomsoever He will" -(Daniel 4: 17, 25, 32 ; 5:21)

    September 24, 2012 at 2:42 pm |
  35. Gary H. Boyd

    As pertains the election process itself, require all voters to present some form of identification confirming their citizenship. As for those running for Congress, impose term limits like those for the Presidency. I suggest 5 2-year terms for the House (maximum of 10 years) and 2 6-year terms for the Senate.(maximum of 12 years). Congress has become over ridden with long term hacks.

    Gary in Scottsdale, Arizona

    September 24, 2012 at 2:45 pm |
  36. ohioken

    Ken from Canton, Ohio. This is only somewhat tongue-in-cheek but I would like to see an option on the ballot where we could vote for "none of the above." If "none of the above" got the most votes which I think it would the election would become void and new elections would have to be held. The candidates that were on the first ballot would be declared ineligible to run again and new candidates would have to be put forth by both parties. We would then keep doing this until we got someone upon whom the majority of American voters could agree on. Unfortunately this could take quite some time considering how the American voter is discouraged, disillusioned and disgusted with the current state of politics in America.

    September 24, 2012 at 2:45 pm |
  37. Dan Hogan

    One of two ways. First would be to garauntee that any organized political party gets access to the ballot, instead of having to petition and getting tied up in court. The second option would be to make the elections non-partisan. America is to blinded by the two-party system. Most people vote for their party instead of voting for the person who is truly the best person for the job.

    September 24, 2012 at 2:46 pm |
  38. Al from orlando

    our representatives in the house should make our selections if they truly represent us

    September 24, 2012 at 2:46 pm |
  39. Nick from Weatherly, PA

    First I would outlaw political parties in any shape or form and remove any voting blocs as well. Then I would remove the monetary needs of candidates by having public sponsored debates and ads with each candidate having a maximum of 5 ads that they can run nationwide for the duration of the election. Next would be the removal the primary system and replace it with a one shot election set in the same time frame it is now. Then I would bring back the old concept of second place is vice president, removing running mates, to create a more balanced atmosphere. Then I would have an application created for phones and computers, through a government monitored and protected site, so that anyone can vote at any time in any place via their social security number.

    September 24, 2012 at 2:48 pm |
  40. Edgar

    may be some one else said this but I heard from my father Rev. Dr. Elmore Colebrooke If You Give a Fool enough Rope he will Hang himself, do the world and your selfs A favor dont ellect this man as President, Capitalism is Dead as we know it we must change that sistem it must have a strown social component if it is to suvive the 21 centry! to qote mr. Busch if you not with us you are against us that is a stupid statement coming from a predisent of the U.S.A:where freedom of speach is imbeded in the basic laws of the Land

    September 24, 2012 at 2:52 pm |
  41. RickFromDetroit

    The only way that we will change the elections in this country is for Congress to pass a single piece of legislation that reads like this. Any law that is passed our lawmakers must be in the best interests of "all of the people" without regard to special interest groups. When a law is voted on by Congress, all lawmakers must complete a form that states why they are voting on the bill, and what consequences the bill may have on the people. The lawmakers must be held criminally responsible for their vote. I.E. If a law maker votes against a health care bill, and we have 45,000 of our citizens die every year because of the bill, [like we currently have], then the law makers must face murder charges.

    Once we establish "law and order" for Congress, and set a standard that they must follow, then we won't have to listen to one lie after another from our law makers, while they do as they please after the election, and Super Pacs will be wasting their time trying to buy an election.

    We have laws for everything from spitting on the sidewalk to driving a car, and now a requirement to purchase health insurance or pay a fine, but when it comes to Congress, it appears that the laws are for everyone except them.

    September 24, 2012 at 2:52 pm |
  42. George in PA

    Let the popular vote determine the winner.

    September 24, 2012 at 2:52 pm |
  43. Annie, Atlanta

    I used to think doing it on-line would be a good idea until it became obvious that Republicans would do anything, including putting our country in jeopardy financially, to win. It doesn't take rocket science to hack into computers, so that's not a good idea. We'd have Republican supermajorities from hereon out. We're heading that way as it is. Did you ever wonder how dirt poor southern states with large minority populations keep electing people who hate them to govern them? It doesn't keep me up at night, but it sure nags at the back of my mind a lot.

    September 24, 2012 at 2:56 pm |
  44. Jason

    Get the lobbyists and money out of politics. Too many politicians being influenced by donation dollars. Repeal Citizen United, it is destroying democracy. We need politicians to do what is right for the country, not a select few corporations and wealthy donors.

    September 24, 2012 at 2:56 pm |
  45. Larry in Houston

    How would you change the way we hold elections ?
    Answer : Get rid of the so called "Electoral College" period. It's antiquated. Back when george washington's time, or Lincoln's time. or even FDR's time, they didn't go all over the country roaming around, stumping and making speeches & etc. Can you imagine going around in the 5 or 6 battleground states by pony express, or by train ? They had morse code, and radio to relay messages in the early 19th century. But before WW 2 – the electoral college was the way to go, even after WW 2 – same way, but T.V. was a new thing at that time. Now, you can talk or text, or send a video to someone in real time, from the Florida keys – to Seattle, in an instant. So why do we need the electoral college now days ? 4 or 5 states are the only ones who can make the outcome of the presidency change every four years, or 8 yrs, whichever it may be. Back during FDR's time ( and before) The president could not "help" the states that really needed it the most, because it took "days" to get some type of answer, or to find out what was going on in that particular state, or if they needed any resources or not. Can you imagine something like "katrina" happening in the 1930's or 1940's to one of our States ? How long would it take for a governor to declare his or her state a disaster, and how long would it take for him or her to get ahold of the president, and get the relief & help they need ?

    September 24, 2012 at 2:56 pm |
  46. Tom in Desoto, TX

    By popular vote for the presidency. The current electoral college aspect is acquainted and ridiculous with it's all or nothing option.. It would be fine for electing Congress which I would like to see doubled in size so one person does not represent so many people. Also, move the government to the middle of the country and see who wants to serve outside Gucci Gulch.

    September 24, 2012 at 2:58 pm |
  47. Dan Jackson

    I'd like to see three key changes:

    1) replace the winner-take type of election with a uniquely American style of proportional representation. The current system keeps the majority of voters from having anyone actually representing them.

    2) eliminate the restrictive ballot laws that the Democrats and Republicans use to suppress third parties, and maintain a virtual monopoly on our government.

    3) move past the idea that one-person "leader" offices are necessary. I'd like to see the Presidency changed into a Federal Council like Switzerland's, as well as governorships changed into state-councils. It's the 21st-century, we can certainly do better than continuing to use a system that comes straight from a band of hunter-gathers from 40,000 BC.

    September 24, 2012 at 2:59 pm |
  48. Susan-NJ

    It's democracy in action-we have one of the few elections in this hemishpere where people don't feel required to shoot one another to change a leader. Perhaps it's the Engllish speaking world's calm.

    September 24, 2012 at 3:01 pm |
  49. Ron WPAFB

    With the way the new generations are so stuck with their heads in a Cell Phone or Pad, the Federal elections are going to have to include some type of Electronic Voting! Now with a computer that does millions of calculations a minute, surely a database of voters can be organized and programed to one vote per voter and a way of securing each individual vote so each individual has a R number or a D number for their own vote, based on the Presidential Candidate they vote for, just in case of irregularities!
    Of course every year the Voter database has to be updated. It also should not be based on States but shear numbers! Electoral College out!

    September 24, 2012 at 3:04 pm |
  50. Mark from New Jersey

    That's a softball, Jack. Get rid of private funding of elections, (and make it a capital crime for cheaters) Lmit electioneering to 60 days before the actual election, and get rid of the electoral college, so every citizen's vote would count.

    September 24, 2012 at 3:05 pm |
  51. Dee in Florida

    Let every vote count, not just in the so-called swing states. I'm sick and tired to get so much attention here in Florida while nobody cares about the voters in other states – because it's a given? Get rid of the winner-take-all rule on state level, and run the election more closely to popularity vote. We would have had a different outcome in 2000.

    September 24, 2012 at 3:05 pm |
  52. Bob

    You know, I've pondered that. The fact is that the electorate stubbornly refuses to change. We don't really pay attention or study the issues. The fact that 30 second sound bites and obviously partisan negative adds sway us, means we are doomed. Lets leave pork out of it.

    September 24, 2012 at 3:11 pm |
  53. Larry from Georgetown, Tx

    Simple; 1. Encourage all people to vote regardless of party (don't put fear into people); oops I forget this is all about power and money! 2. Pay people to vote like some schools pay for grades even though the students cheat. 3. Actually, I don't know because we are so corrupt at all levels.

    September 24, 2012 at 3:20 pm |
  54. chris

    number one make it a ceimne to nlie to the voters and they have to g to jail for brokeen promises they make during ghtr campaign trail to lure us to vote for them make congress work for us bnot the other way around where it is now and let us have more of a saw in govt spendign and really cut the waste they promise but never deliver

    September 24, 2012 at 3:23 pm |
  55. Alexandre Aguiar

    The United States should look down South to Brazil. It is a 200 million people country that for over a decade has a 100% electronic voting system that is trusted by the people and politicians with no fraud claims. It allows to know the winner from 3 to 6 hours after polls are closed, despite the huge dimension of the country. Even the indigenous people, in the middle of the Amazon forest, use electronic voting machines. Alexandre Aguiar, Porto Alegre, Brazil.

    September 24, 2012 at 3:26 pm |
  56. tepeters Minneapolis, MN

    Allow campaigning for only 60 days long and publically financed.

    September 24, 2012 at 3:27 pm |
  57. Ed from MD

    I would charge a voting fee made payable to me.

    September 24, 2012 at 3:27 pm |
  58. Donna Wisconsin

    Change the day we are suppose to vote–Tuesday. Years ago that nay have been fine, but in today's world econmomy, folks work round the clock and weekends. We need to have polls accessable for a longer period of time. We need to make voting easier not harder. Other countries vote on Sundays and way more hours. Some states have voting set up in malls,etc. The Republican Party wants to curtail votes while other counties are trying to find ways to increase voting. Make it easy.

    September 24, 2012 at 3:28 pm |
  59. Kim, Dodge City, Kansas

    Jack, since you are asking us to fantasize, let's start with repealing Citizens United. Other than the antiquated electoral college and "swing state" BS, Citizens United has done more damage to our fragile democracy than any enemy, foriegn or domestic. This single decision has made our individual vote completely meaningless. If anyone doubts this, just watch Congress implode in the next three years. SuperPacs have already figured out that it's cheaper and easier to buy congressional seats that it is to buy presidents or entire political parties.

    September 24, 2012 at 3:29 pm |
  60. Steve S.

    I would do only one thing, Jack. I would allow sixteen year-olds to vote in the next election, whether it is the next congressional or presidential election. Who cares if the votes are counted early or on time? The important thing is that every taxpayer's vote be counted. That is the definition of a democracy: where every income taxpayer has an equal say in the government.

    Steve. S

    September 24, 2012 at 3:30 pm |
  61. Dave, Kissimmee, FL

    First, the anachronistic electoral college would be abolished, second, there would be no early voting, third there would be limits on how much can be spent on ANY form of political advertising/campaigning (to nullify the stupidity of the Citizens United ruling), and last but not least, no campaign can last more than 4 weeks (to save what's left of my sanity).

    September 24, 2012 at 3:32 pm |
  62. Dan from New York

    1. Make access for third parties easier.
    2. Eliminate the electoral college.
    3. Eliminate corporate money.
    4. Eliminate PACs.
    5. Hook up candidates to a lie-detector during all debates.

    September 24, 2012 at 3:34 pm |
  63. Lee, Wyoming

    I did not realize such a high percentage voted early. Amazing.

    Change our elections? Make the process fair. Stop unfair voter suppression.
    Stop ridiculous gerrymandering. And most of all, recall Citizens United!!!!!

    September 24, 2012 at 3:37 pm |
  64. Gordo from NJ

    Jack, The real problem is the Electoral College and the Primary system. Iowa and New Hampshire voters largely pick the candidates. Then, the only voters who really get to pick the President are those who live in swing states. America needs to dump the Electoral College system in favor of direct election of the President. Why should my vote be less important than that of a vote in Ohio?

    September 24, 2012 at 3:39 pm |
  65. Gail, Plano TX.

    Jack: I think it would be advantageous to have election day on a Saturday. People work during the week & are sometimes deterred from going to the polls. I also think the ballot should contain only candidates. No propositions. I understand that crazy Florida has a 12 page ballot which is designed to frustrate or confuse voters. And to suppress the vote. I never vote on propositions. A waste of time. I live in a red state, so my vote will not count electorally as you know. But, nevertheless it will be recorded in the popular vote tally. And so when I cast my vote, I know I have done the right thing, however, skewed the system is.

    September 24, 2012 at 3:48 pm |
  66. Cres from Fla.

    I'd put an option of "NONE OF THE ABOVE" on the ballot. Maybe then we could get someone worth getting
    excited about and more importantly worth really voting FOR. Then again..............

    September 24, 2012 at 3:59 pm |
  67. Michael, from Smiths, Alabama

    Good question, Jack. I'll answer it this way.....abolish the Electoral College.

    September 24, 2012 at 4:05 pm |
  68. David Doherty

    That's easy Jack, get rid of the electoral college! That has to be the most absurd thing ever devised. You want to tear this country apart, let Mr. Obama win the popular vote and throw it out because (the money vote), I mean the electoral college over ruled it. It's unbelievable that it's a possibility, but it's not only possible, but it's likely to happen. This country's Presidents are bought and paid for by big business. You know how politicians are always saying the US. is the greatest country in the world, thats their way of serving us another shot of cool-aid.
    Dave from NH.

    September 24, 2012 at 4:07 pm |
  69. I'm a Rose

    Let every citizen vote....Period plain and simple. If they want to be the President they should represent all people.

    If a canidate can't win unless they cheat and keep the old, the young, the black and the latino from voting, then something is severly wrong in America.

    September 24, 2012 at 4:10 pm |
  70. Ed Crocheron, Venice, FL

    All federal elections would last for a 7 day period and voting would be mandatory for everyone 18 and over. At age 18, folks would register to vote, just as young men have to register with Selective Service. Failure to vote would result in a $100. fine.

    September 24, 2012 at 4:12 pm |
  71. Gigi Oregon

    First of all I would shorten the election campaigns to 3 months and do mail in votes. Stop bribing Lobbyists in Congress and Super Pacs. Keep it neat and tidy. Make it an honest Democracy. How refreshing that would be, we might be able to actually have common decency in the USA..

    September 24, 2012 at 4:15 pm |
  72. Adrian

    No voting Jack that's old fashioned. Let the candidate that gets the most super pacs money win by default .
    Saves time and money why bother voting. Both parties are essentially the same warmonger parties taking orders from corporations and the Jewish lobby.

    Think of the advantages, no ballots to count, no useless debates , on secret tapes to listen too, no BS for the whole campaign .No annoying attack ads. no hanging chads , no suspense for the election night. The Wniner just has to show the total amount of money deposited by the super pacs in his bank account.

    September 24, 2012 at 4:24 pm |
  73. Bob, St. Thomas PA

    In addition to getting rid of the electoral college as others have mentioned, we should have one six year term for the President, the House, and the Senate. Now, no one is campaigning on "company time" and legislation can be conducted without regard to re-election, as there won't be any.

    September 24, 2012 at 4:24 pm |
  74. Stella-Northern, New York

    Hello Jack. It depends on what kind of Country you want. I would hope that all Americans support and defend their right to vote vigorously not just for yourself but for ALL. We all know what is happening across this Country to discourage and to deprive many Americans of their right to cast a ballot. I have faith in the people living in these States to remove from office any state elected official who has promoted and voted for this legistlation. If they don't then all of the people living in that State are at risk in the future.

    September 24, 2012 at 4:25 pm |
  75. Larry Hoffman, Middle Village NY

    Limit the Campaign Season to six months, set a maximum amount of spending as an equa amount for both candidates.
    Also set the Country up into four or si Regions and hold REGIONAL Primaries and set spending limits for those as well. This Dammed campaign is going to cost an extimated 3 billion JUST for the Presidency. Ludicris !!!!!

    September 24, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
  76. A Southern Lady - North Carolina

    (1)Campaigning only 90 days before the election date. (2) Do away with the Electoral College (3) Repeal Citizens United
    (4) Voting should be the first Saturday and Sunday in November (5) The Voter Right Act must be enforced. No state funny-business to limit voting – did you hear that, Republicans? (6) Paper ballots with a receipt given to each voter (7) The winner will be determined by polular vote so each vote counts. (9) The duly elected President will be treated with dignity and respect by both parties.

    September 24, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
  77. Liz. Florida

    Have election day on a weekend & keep the polls open for 24 hours. That way most people would be off & nurses who work12 hr. shifts would be able to vote too.

    September 24, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
  78. jimc Canada

    Eliminate the super packs. Your elections are being bought Said for the greatest nation on earth heh

    September 24, 2012 at 4:31 pm |
  79. Nora H G Corpus Christi

    Let the candidates ONLY campaign for maybe 2 months. That even seems like too long. Plus they are spending a fortune
    On this. The country can use the money to feed hungry children or something other than Nasty ads on tv etc...most important I would say if it is not true, you can't say it, really what is wrong with fact checking. People deserve the truth, be it ugly or not.

    September 24, 2012 at 4:35 pm |
  80. Itsmeagain, Wyoming

    Limit the campaign time -- 6 weeks sounds good to me. Do away with the
    electoral college. Popular vote is the way to go. And honestly, we are going
    to have to do away with the 2-party system. No Citizens United. Out of tax
    money, give each candidate a certain amount, and they are strictly audited - cheaters are eliminated (I mean from the election!)

    September 24, 2012 at 4:36 pm |
  81. Disgusted Pat

    Abolish the electoral college.

    September 24, 2012 at 4:36 pm |
  82. Renee, Illinois

    We need to make a lot of changes starting with getting rid of the Electoral College in favor of popular vote. Make it easier for people to vote, not harder. Get rid of the Citizens United decision that's flooding our election campaigns with money – and little or no idea where a lot of it is coming from. That one really bad change is just an invitation to foreign interference in our election process. You think China is a problem now? Imagine if they start funnelling money into this country to influence our elections. And it wouldn't hurt to take a lesson from England and limit the amount of time that candidates have for campaigning. The almost non-stop mudslinging turns off so many people that they just don't vote out of pure disgust.

    September 24, 2012 at 4:37 pm |
  83. Tom Bulger, Canandaigua, NY

    Create a democracy, one person, one vote. No electoral college and no republic. Proportional representation and no more winner take all.

    September 24, 2012 at 4:40 pm |
  84. Disgusted Pat

    Besides abolishing the electoral college, there should be a limit on campaign spending and the length of these campaigns. The amount of money spent buying these elections is obscene and there should be 4-6 weeks spent on primaries and 2 months tops for the campaign itself. And, I can't believe the supreme court allows superpacs!

    Pat in northern NY

    September 24, 2012 at 4:45 pm |
  85. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    I wouldn't change anything about the election process because someone will always get short changed, it's happened before.

    September 24, 2012 at 4:47 pm |
  86. Prem

    1. Simplify this madness as follows:
    -. State level presentation in each state by each candidate of 30mts each followed by one hour debate – same day.
    -. Three (3) Nation level 30mts presentation by each candidate of 30mts each followed by one hour debate – same day
    Total presentation debate: 53

    2. Each voter with SSN (Identifying citizenship) should be allowed to vote.

    3. All above is Govt. expense.
    4. Any candidate soliciting donation / influence of any kind etc.. is disqualified at any time during the race (Election Body / Highest Court)
    5. Party (Rep, Dem) chooses their candidate only thru their Party workers.
    6. The entire process should not be more the 100 days.

    September 24, 2012 at 4:54 pm |
  87. John from Santa Maria, CA

    Somehow get everyone to Vote. I dont care when, where, or for who, just vote, its our way, its the American way.

    September 24, 2012 at 4:55 pm |
  88. Darlene Williams

    If I could change the process of elections I would first not make it so long. I would use three months before the final election. One month would highlight the candidates and provide information about them (personal life). The second month would focus on their background (experience) and the third month would focus on the debates (their intellect). When time comes for the election you vote. All of this money being used to try and buy elections would cease. Everyone appears to be concerned about the economy but won't put all the billions they have to make it better.

    September 24, 2012 at 4:57 pm |
  89. Curtis in Philadelphia

    Imagine if we did what England does: limit the campaign season to six weeks before the actual election, today would be the first day of the campaign. Wouldn't that be nice. Let the primaries start as they do in New Hampshire and Iowa, get them done by Memorial Day, then have the conventions after Labor Day and start the real campaigning six weeks out. How civilized.

    September 24, 2012 at 4:58 pm |
  90. Mark.....in Houston

    Pretty much all of the process could stand improvement Jack. But....if I had my way and if it were possible the one thing I would implement is.....A Lie Monitor. A simple device worn by each candidate that would immediately activate upon detecting a lie misstatement or exaggeration. The candidates voice would immediately be drowned out by a very loud blaring kazoo like sound followed by a booming voice repeating " THAT'S A LIE " six times.

    This would greatly increase voter interest , if not for entertainment value alone, and ultimately result in a much more knowledgeable voter base. Later we could incorporate this same process into Talk Radio.

    September 24, 2012 at 4:58 pm |
  91. Jeff in ORlando

    Pay no tax, you dont get to vote. Receiving government aid besides SS RETIREMENT (not disability), you dont get to vote. This way people stop voting themselves a paycheck and a free life.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:04 pm |
  92. Peter, Tarrytown, N.Y

    The 1st thing I would do would move voting day from Thursday to Saturday, perhaps several Saturdays.
    I would implement some form of counterfeit proof national voter registration card.
    I would create an accurate and up-to-date registry of all eligible voters.
    I would eliminate the Electoral College.
    I would not allow absentee ballots except for those in the military, those that are physically handicapped or out of state college students and those that can prove they have to be 'out-of-town' on voting day(s).
    I would limit early voting to 2 weeks prior to (1st) election day.


    I would not allow anyone without at least a GED to vote.
    I would not allow anyone wearing a tee-shirt with a political, social or religious message on it vote.
    I would not allow anyone that is undecided 30 days before the election to vote.
    I would not allow anyone that choose their candidate on 11-4-2008 to vote.
    I would not allow anyone that doesn't support my candidate to vote.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:04 pm |
  93. Frank Poynton from Los Angeles

    You suggest that perhaps we should not have an Election Day because of the modern technology available. Perhaps you have never experienced any difficulty at all with modern technology. Problems at the polls on election day are nothing compared to waiting on hold for a technician who will attempt to walk you through to a solution. I can only imagine the problems we'd have with modern technology when it comes to a presidential election.
    The solution for people having to wait in long lines to vote has republicans worried so much that they have have attempted to solve it by shrinking the electorate. Hows that working out?
    I would suggest that voting hours be expanded a few hours in both the morning and night. Also, so as not to influence anybody's vote, the declared winner should not be announced until the polls close in Hawaii. There need not be any type of "Dewey defeats Truman" headlines in todays day and age.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:06 pm |
  94. Frank Atkinson

    Get rid of the electoral college, everyone's vote should count the same as anyone else's... The parties want it because they don't have to campaign as much..

    September 24, 2012 at 5:07 pm |
  95. Rob in FL

    By FORCING everyone that is eligible to vote. Not voting should equal suspension of citizens rights and other privileges, such as driving or traveling until the next election, I'm tired of people complaining and then NOT going out and voting.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:15 pm |
  96. Ted

    How about the first step is proving you are a citizen. The second step is proving you are still alive. The third step is proving you know who is running for office on the ticket. The fourth step is eliminating the party listing on the ballot and mixing up the candidates so that you could not vote the party line unless you knew the candidates. The last step would be that you are required to vote in this election or you lose your right to vote for 4 years and can not vote in any elections until the next presidential election is over.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:15 pm |
  97. yellow rose of texas

    I agree with Richard (from Texas) to give a fingerprint before you vote, with Paul (from Austin) to get rid of the electoral vote and with the others who believe that campaigns should not be longer than three months. I also believe that Corporations and businesses should not be allowed to contribute money to the candidates, only the the general public.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:16 pm |
  98. wahela

    Get rid of the electoral college. get rid of campaign financing or a limit of a million or something like that. Have a debate of all eligible candidates once a week, ask questions about their views on everything and their ideas about what we should do in the future. Allow any legitimate candidates to go to the debates. Allow mail in voting, early voting, and a two day voting period and when that ends, tally the votes.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:17 pm |
  99. Sherry

    Soon, all voting will be on the internet. I hope I live to see that day!

    September 24, 2012 at 5:21 pm |
  100. Jerad

    I live in the state of Washington and we have all vote by mail. I love it. I can sit down, research the candidates I haven't heard about and make a good decsion rather than trying to jockey with the crowds and get time off of work on the election day just to guess at some candidates that I'm not sure of. I wish every state would do this.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:22 pm |
  101. Don Howard

    Isn't it about time maybe we held elections on a Saturday? Isn't something THIS important worth doing when more folks have more time to get to the polls? I understand why a Tuesday was selected Centuries ago, but those reason – mainly pertaining to farmers getting to the polls, no longer exist. Why JUST ONE DAY?

    September 24, 2012 at 5:22 pm |
  102. Sam

    Get rid of the electoral college so we actually have faith in the system.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:22 pm |
  103. Jon from Tempe, Az

    We should follow Oregon and Washington's lead nationwide and have strictly a mail in electioin with no pollig places. A lot cheaper and it would increase voter participation. Internet voting would be a good idea too if they can find a way to make sure it is secure.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:22 pm |
  104. Steve

    Make like like American Idol, with Simon telling the loser how bad he sucks.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:22 pm |
  105. Johnathan Ross

    I would just vote independent.....because, i just do not trust both Democrats and Republicans why can't they just work together like they used to?

    September 24, 2012 at 5:22 pm |
  106. Jack, Lancaster, Ohio

    Mr. Cafferty:
    I say we need to throw out the electoral college (like it's an educated thing!), go with the raw popular vote, and vote by email or phone like the parties like the venue they use to interfere with our late dinners (late because overtime or a second job must be taken advantage of).

    September 24, 2012 at 5:23 pm |
  107. Robert H. Pike, Homestead, Fl

    We can, and should, and we most certainly will eventually use the internet. I pay bills, do on line banking on the web; and we can pay taxes via the web; isn't it about time we used the web to save time, the cost of opening and manning tolling places, etc?

    September 24, 2012 at 5:23 pm |
  108. Suzanne

    First we need to get rid of the electoral college. Being a Democrat in a 'red' state I rather feel like I am a 'forgotten' voter. Does this mean I won't be voting???? You bet your bottom dollar I'll be in the booth!!

    Van Buren, Ar

    September 24, 2012 at 5:24 pm |
  109. Tom

    I would make Election Day a National Holiday allowing that day for voting. The only exception would be Absentee Ballots which would be counted on the same day. Instead of Early Voting, only accept absentee ballots.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:24 pm |
  110. S. Bennett

    Shorten campaign time, limit donations, vote electronically from computers at work, or at home, or smartphones, have a week or two to vote–there has to be a better way. Oh, and get rid of the Electoral College.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:25 pm |
  111. Ex Mil

    Make voting a responsibility by making voting compulsory, as in Australia where you get fined if you do not vote.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:25 pm |
  112. hallie

    I would eliminate the whole election process and declare Donald duck as supreme ruler of America. Pennsylvania

    September 24, 2012 at 5:25 pm |
  113. Wolf Haley

    I would get rid of electoral colleges, make the election based on popular vote, and make sure the only money candidates received were from people. And by people, I mean People People not Corporation People.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:25 pm |
  114. Kazz

    Have a 2-3 day window on a weekend so more people can vote. And enable online voting. If the IRS can take our money online, the Government can take our votes online.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:25 pm |
  115. Martha Campbell

    Since the wolf is guarding the hen house this will never happen, but I would throw out the electoral college, everyone votes on the same day, at the end of the day, whoever has the most votes WINS. Simple

    Jamestown, PA 16134

    September 24, 2012 at 5:26 pm |
  116. Expat taxpayer

    Do away with the electoral vote in favor of a popular vote and refine the voter registration system allowing only those who file andpay their taxes in a timely manner to vote. If you don't file or pay your taxes, you shouldn't vote. If the country had a citizen ID card issued to every citizen complete with a swipe strip and security code, it seems to me there would be a lot less fraud.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:26 pm |
  117. Greg Brown

    Make the people's vote count. Get rid of the electorial college.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:26 pm |
  118. Chase Schimel

    The Electoral System of voting is flawed to an extent that has almost rendered my vote useless. My state (New Mexico) has 5 electoral votes, which amounts to less than 1% of the electoral total. If there is to be any change made to our voting system, we should start at the system itself. There are greater minds than my own out there that can dictate or determine a more fit system that can address this issue. Doesn't everyone want their vote to REALLY matter?

    September 24, 2012 at 5:26 pm |
  119. Jay Hanig

    Topsail Beach, NC

    I think the Electoral College has outlived its usefulness. There is no reason why we couldn't directly vote and elect our President and Vice President. Also, I would allow property owners to vote in local elections in any and all entities where they pay taxes. Choose a spot for voting for the President and VP but allow full representation in any place you pay taxes.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:26 pm |
  120. Mo in Marietta

    I would do away with multi-term presidencies and have a sinle, longer term of perhaps seven years.

    The first year or two of a presidency is spent figuring things out. With our current system, that president then has to essentially start running for re-election. Meanwhile they put some of the initiates and programs that they are trying to get underway on the back burner.

    A single term presidency would give us more real work from the president.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:27 pm |
  121. DeMarcus

    I would make the method of voting consistent throughout the nation. With hanging chads, computer glitches, misplaced ballots, and unclear bubble-ins there are too many opportunities for mistakes to be made. If we want to perfect the system of voting we should start by being under that same system. Even now the voter I.D. laws are poorly masked attempt use the system to the system to beat the system. It's not right.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:27 pm |
  122. dcdevane

    GET RID OF THE BLASTED ELECTORAL COLLEGE. It has outlived its usefulness. Move the elections from Tuesdays to Saturdays. Have polls open for 1 full week prior to the 'official' election day. Move the polling centers to the malls. They have plenty of parking, it could 'stimulate the economy' as people did a little shopping along with their voting, and god knows there's plenty of empty stores in the malls all over the country. Plus, most cities have buses that go to the malls (bus stops there) so more people could get there more easily. Drop this voter ID BS. If people come in with a drivers license, student id, SS card, and a light bill or credit card with their name on it... good enough. GET RID OF DIEBOLD. Work out an electronic online option. If we can vote for American Idol from our living rooms, we should be able to vote for President/congress etc. Do not release ANY returns until Hawaii has voted. THEN and ONLY THEN can you start releasing predictions and totals.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:27 pm |
  123. Rudy Padgett

    The first thing I would do is stop all the early elections, and make everyone vote on the real election day. Second thing I would do is do away with the electoral college and go to the popular vote. Think back to Gore. He would have been President if we had popular vote.

    Rudy in Virginia

    September 24, 2012 at 5:28 pm |
  124. Robert H. Pike, Homestead, Fl

    Use the internet, get rid of the Electoral college, and declare the Citizens United decision (allowing Super PAC's) unconstitutional.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:28 pm |
  125. Marylyn

    make election day Saturday and Sunday and absolutely no campaigning prior to 90 days before election. Maximum dollar amount to be spent by each candidate. End Citizens United. Give serious attention and criminal penalties to attempts to suppress the vote.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:28 pm |
  126. Sheila

    I would hold much shorter elections... campaigning can only occur for 50 days. Period. Then, any candidate who doesn't take down his or her yard signs within 24 hours of the election has to eat them on national TV. It is a disgrace that we will start to cover the 2016 election just minutes after the 2012 election wraps up. I love the political scene, but it costs too much and leads to national apathy.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:29 pm |
  127. Brian

    The first step would be to abolish the Electoral College. There's no excuse for a candidate to win the electoral vote while losing the popular vote. Shorten campaign time so we won't get burned out on polls and ads. No more corporate-sponsored campaigns; Lincoln didn't have them, and he was arguably our greatest president. Elections should also be held during a weekend, not during a workday, or at least for three consecutive days.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:29 pm |
  128. Monica

    Do what they do in Australia. Vote at a weekend, so that at least people don't have to take time off work in order to vote! And make it mandatory, people will become far more engaged in the process. 95% of the vote in Australia is legitimate. Fine those who don't vote, that is a great motivator! Introduce preferential voting, and get rid of the electoral colleges. Set limits on the funding allowed to feather the nests of potential candidates, and black out all advertising in the last week leading up to the election.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:29 pm |
  129. Emily

    I can't believe how long it takes until election day! The candidates are pandering or campaigning for far too long. I'd like to see the time in which the election starts until voting day a much shorter time span - as a start!

    September 24, 2012 at 5:29 pm |
  130. Terry in Virginia

    End Electoral College. Quaint as it is, it outlived its usefulness a long time ago. Set up a single fund to which people and corporations can contribute money for campaign expenses to be shared equally among the candidates for President. This will not be limited to just the Democrats and Republicans but to any viable, valid party in which a candidate has received at least 5% of the vote in a primary. (No more caucuses.) This money will be used for travel expenses, posters, bumper stickers, pins, and other incidentals. No contributions can be made directly to candidates by anyone. If a candidate can't live within his or her budget, then that gives the taxpayers an idea of what that candidate would do with The People's money. As part of the annual licensing fees, the FCC will require free air time to candidates from all media, to be shared equally among the candidates. No more 24/7 advertising like it seems now. Dump any company producing voting equipment that has demonstrated its partisanship and/or ineptitude in the past. We'd be better off going back to paper ballots to be counted by hand. Absentee ballots may be sent in no earlier than the day after Labor Day and received no later than the first Tuesday in November in their respective precincts. Non-absentee voting will start the first Tuesday in October and end the first Tuesday in November of any election year. The final hand count of paper ballots must be complete and certified by November 30, including absentee ballots. Voters must receive a voter registration card prior to voting and provide some form of ID that shows his or her name and address whether it is a driver's license, electric bill, tax bill, or affidavit from two persons with proper ID who know said person. In no case can requirements for voter ID affect the election for that year and must take place no sooner than the year following the current election. Finally, term limits so we're not stuck with these clowns for years on end. Two terms for the Senate and six terms for the House. I'd also cut their pay, benefit, office expenses, make their retirement Social Security.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:30 pm |
  131. Name*Axi Wells

    With all the new technology on hand this days,I think we should be able to vote 100% all the voters at the same day and have one general and unique time to do it.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:30 pm |
  132. Gary Miller

    Hi Jack, gas stations and other retailers have adjusted to the new americian lifestyle,hell even the post office is doing business on the weekend(losing money last time I checked) Hold the election on the weekend and let's see how America really feels.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:30 pm |
  133. Denis

    Wow... OK, first I'd do away with the parties and tickets. If 12 people run for President, the contest should be just that... a contest. Let the 12 people (or however many people run) compete... and like a horse race, or a foot race, the person that comes in 1st is the President, the second finisher is VP, third is the bronze winner or runner-up, and like Miss America, if the first place or second place winner cannot fulfill their obligations, the runner-up moves up!

    Limit campaign spending to $50 million, and force these people to actually say what matters, not pay for high-priced, hollywood attack videos. Th amount of money they're spending now is not only ridiculous, but offensive and obscene

    September 24, 2012 at 5:31 pm |
  134. Chck Roeser

    Require that everyone who pays money into the funds to run the campaigns has a legitimate Voter ID as being propose. ID info, it is posted publicly, and end the individual contribution limits. People want freedom of speech let them identify themelves not hide behind money raisers. End coprorate involvement.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:31 pm |
  135. Betty

    Early voting might stop some of the problems with the "rigged" voting machines. Or that problem they had in Florida with the"hanging" chads-or whatever they were called.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:32 pm |
  136. jameslightbourne

    If the internet has shown us anything, it's that everyone seems to have an opinion; and everyone can have access to sharing it. The fact that we all cram into the polls on one day is itself an act of disenfranchisement. Civic responsibility gets the same lame public relations treatment as the naive "just say no" campaign.
    And yet, even just here in the responses there is an enormous consensus gauge left impotent and floating in a vacuum. We should not only demand a more convenient ballot schedule, we should demand more opportunities to vote more often on more than just who gets to live like they're on a junket "representing" our interests. A little civic responsibility can go a long way.
    Corporations spend billions mining the data of our every move on the internet to figure out what we want and how we are most likely to buy it. Every few years, a massive census of the entire population of this country is taken and evaluated.
    Why can't quarterly events be held; where people can visit sites and vote on the issues? Why can't voting mobiles visit massive corporate complexes like blood drives? Why can't we have more tools to help us? They are available. Over time this may inform the public and make them more active citizens. And how about we make it illegal not to vote? It's illegal not to pay taxes, and the two (taxation and representation) seem to share some ideological platform traditionally.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:32 pm |
  137. Dale N.M.

    Make all 50 states equal , show identification person go in make their choices, afterword finger in purple ink.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:32 pm |
  138. Hank Corbett of Jacksonville, NC

    I would open up all of the primary elections to voters of any affiliation. Currently, the voters in the primaries represent the 'base' of each party. These voters select the candidate from their party that most appeals to the most ideologically extreme elements to represent them in the General Election. This isn't right!! We need to have only one primary election that is open to all registered voters. The two candidate that receive the most votes would then go on to the General Elections. If we had done that for the Republican primary, I think the Republican candidate would be different than what we have, now.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:33 pm |
  139. lynnej in north carolina

    I would change elections as follows:

    1. Federally mandated term limits. 1 six year term for President, 2 four terms for senators and house reps.
    2. Elminate the Electoral College. That is outdated and besides a handful of states shouldn't hold sway for the rest of the country. Let the popular vote name the winner.
    3. Publicly finance elections. This would eliminate lobbyists and money.
    4. Pay is cut. No more pensions, cadillac insurance and such. They get 20K a year and learn to deal with the insurance companies. Their pensions are folded into Social Security.
    5. The shaping of congressional districts is taken out of the states hands in order to make sure that one party doesn't fix the district to suit them.
    6. Voting starts the beginning of the weekend before Election Day where everyone can vote properly.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:37 pm |
  140. Robert

    From a practical point of view, I'd require voting booths to be open on at least the two Weekends's before the election, and I'd require a paper copy of whatever was voted for each vote, and that the voter would see that paper result.

    Now, if we wanted to really change things, I'd make elections truly representative and a bit like Jury duty. If you meet the minimum requirements of education and such then your eligible to serve a single term. In other words, our house representatives would be truly a random sampling. To insure a bit of order, senators would be chosen from those who were previously chosen as representatives, provided they weren't recalled of course.

    The top leadership position of president would be divided into two positions like is common in many countries with one position chosen every two years from the previous set of Senators by popular vote of every citizen. Citizens could also vote to recall/replace any representative, senator, or leadership position every two years, but the new person would have to be chosen by the previously mentioned rules. Basically the idea is to get the politics out of the job, so maybe something can get done. No doubt the idea could use some polish, but I don't know many people who could do a worse job than the current batch, since average people would actually be trying to solve problems, rather than just advance idiologies...

    September 24, 2012 at 5:38 pm |
  141. Noel Day

    Hey Jack,
    The very first thing we need to do is to eliminate the Electoral college, it is as anti democratic as any institution in America today! One man, one vote! The secound thing to do is to totally eliminate super pacs and ALL forms of donation, we should make ANY money ANY politician excepts is a crime of bribery!! ALL politicians would have ONLY 60 min.s on TV for the entire election cycle, this would force politicians to prioritize their platform and reduce negative advertizing. Thirdly, ALL elections would have a box on the ticket marked "None of the above", if "None of the Above" wins, then those people are permanently barred from office. Lastly, we must put serious term limits on ALL politicians, there should be no such thing as a career politician!

    September 24, 2012 at 5:38 pm |
  142. Mary

    Hi Jack
    Mary from Toronto
    first I would make sure that no-one who was an American would be prevented from voting. Republicans only believe in democracy until it creates an honest election. We've seen in the 2004 election a disasterous President that was not elected by all the people and the consequence to American militaryfamilies. The Republicans didn't want "you people" to look into that election. However they're ok with Corporations influencing the vote because "corporations are people"

    September 24, 2012 at 5:39 pm |
  143. Roy

    I would use technology to allow people to vote on the internet. I would have a system in place that would have you to confirm that you are registered to vote based on your drivers license or ID number or proof of citizenship if you weren't a natural born citizen like before you get to see the ballot. The system would show that you are a registered voter plus it will show that you have already voted which eliminates repeat voting. If they can set up a system for millions of people to vote on the next American Idol, to be sure someone can develop a system that would allow voters to cast there ballots online as well.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:40 pm |
  144. Mike Domsodi

    Elections should not last 6 months. In Canada once a election is announced there is only 45 days of campaign time allowed.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:40 pm |
  145. Nora

    1. Use the predidential fund collected by IRS and distribute it evenly amoung the candidates. This would eliminate both superpacs and lobbyist from buying the presidency.

    2. Have the election run for three months prior to election day, and allow people to vote, (1) At the local election office (2) By Mail (3) On election day. This would eliminate absentee voting all together saving that money.

    3. Create a website to allow people to know if their vote was cast only but leaving off who they voted for to avoid hackers and voter fraud.

    4. Get rid of the electorial votes and let the people vote for who that would like to see as president.

    This would allow the person with the best ideas and plans to win the election/

    September 24, 2012 at 5:40 pm |
  146. Bill

    1. no citizen's united.
    2. no announcing you will any earlier than 1 year prior to election day.
    3. $5,000 max donation per individual. this means no bundlers or PACS.
    4. voting done in primaries by time zone. NH stays first, but is allowed to join time zone that is first.
    5. time zone primary voting done starting no earlier than Jan. 2 of the election year and states in the selected zone may hold voting any day over a 6-8 week block.
    6. time zone voting rotates every presidential cycle.
    7. electoral college is gone. votes counted and matched by congressional district. so no 'big city' targeting.
    8. candidate with majority of districts gets 2 senate votes. if a tie in number of districts happens, each runner gets 1.
    9. congressman/woman/senator assigned a vote to cast by district/state MUST cast as district/state voted. (if 3 of 4 districts go democrat, 3 house members and 2 senators for that state MUST vote democrat).
    10. each time zone gets the 6-8 window to hold primary. this would be done by end of July.
    11. conventions held in august.

    being restricted by time and financial resource, a quicker campaign should be less annoying. i'm so glad i live in a state where i'm apparently a different 47% group. i'm not in a 'swing state', so ads are considerably less. most of the controversial ads i've seen have been reported on the news.

    and rule 12. news channels may only report on a candidate's comments ONCE!!! no repeating it 5 times in a day as though its still news the 4th and 5th time because a new anchor is having a new pundit 'analyze' it. note: it took a mass murder in colorado to get the candidates off the camera for a day. a sad thing.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:42 pm |
  147. Nora

    Oh yeah! I forgot

    Allot each candidate equal amounts of public broadcasting air time.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:42 pm |
  148. Name*ed luby

    Vote when you file your taxes how hard is that this way more people might vote

    September 24, 2012 at 5:45 pm |
  149. Larry in Houston

    How would you change the way we hold elections ?
    I can tell you how the "F" word channel would change it. They would make sure people that were not of any latino decent get to Vote ! ( Imagine if Obama defeats Romney) hannity / Rush / & carl rove will end up in the I. C. U. with heart attacks.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:48 pm |
  150. Joanne

    First: Hold Elections on a SUNDAY when most people are off.
    Second: Shorten the campaign time. It seems out of a four year cycle the President can actually WORK only 3 years.
    What is this? Shorten campaign to 4 – 6 months! MAX! How come it works all over Europe? 3 months campaign and evrybody still survived. Don't Romney and Co also have work to do??? He is campagnng now for 2 years.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:48 pm |
  151. Ken

    Our elections should be held Friday to Tuesday, a 5 day period and should be made manditory for everyone of voting age to vote. That would make us a true democracy where everyone voices their opinion.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:49 pm |
  152. Joanne

    Oh yeah, see above! What is this about 'electoral' votes? Count the actual votes and that's that.

    September 24, 2012 at 5:50 pm |
  153. JC

    I think the problem is more serious at the voting machine. You can change the results by subtle reallocation of votes. All you need is to bribe the programmer (I am one). We should have open-source voting machine programs that are linked to self-authenticating mathematical digests. The voting machines should then be loaded and built on empty hardware just before voting begins, and under supervision of agents of candidates and public interest organizations

    September 24, 2012 at 5:54 pm |
  154. Doug East Palatka, FL

    By pistol duel. It has always been voting for the lesser of two evils anyways...

    September 24, 2012 at 5:54 pm |
  155. Bener

    Hi Jack. Thank you for the Florida comments! We still love you though. 🙂

    September 24, 2012 at 5:55 pm |