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In the United States, Election Day for general elections of public officials - notably the President, Vice Prsident, and members of Congress - was set into law by an act of the 28th Congress in 1845 as "the Tuesday next after the first Monday in the month of November."

Election Day is a civic holiday in Delaware, Hawaii, Kentucky, Montana, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, West Virginia, and the territory of Puerto Rico. Proposals for making Election Day a federal holiday have so far been unsuccessful.

Most U.S. states allow voters to cast ballots before the Election Day and most have 
some kind of absentee ballot system. Unconditional early voting in person is allowed in 32 states and in D.C. Unconditional absentee voting by mail is allowed in 27 states and D.C., and with an excuse in another 21 states. Unconditional permanent absentee voting is allowed in seven states and in D.C.

Postal voting for all major elections has been established in Colorado, Oregon and Washington, with ballots mailed to voters several weeks before Election Day. In Oregon, all postal votes must be received by a set time on Election Day. Washington State requires postal votes be postmarked by Election Day. 

Election Days Around the World


28 January: Cypriot presidential election, Finnish presidential election

4 February: Costa Rican general election

7 March: Sierra Leone, general election

11 March: Colombian parliamentary election

17 March: South Australian state election

18 March: Russian presidential election

27 March: Colombian presidential election

1 July: Mexican general election

7 July: Afghan parliamentary election

29 July:  Cambodian general election

9 September: Swedish general election

7 October: Brazilian general election.

14 October:  
Belgian local elections

17 October: Azerbaijani presidential election

28 October: Brazilian general election.

6 November: United State gubernatorial, Senate and House of Representatives elections

24 November: Victorian state election

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