Under federal law passed in 1845, elections are held on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November. Lawmakers chose Tuesday in order to give voters one travel day after the Sunday day of rest to get from their farms into town to vote. Critics say the practice of voting on Tuesdays is outdated and depresses turnout.
"Since nationwide federal elections have never been held on a weekend, it is difficult to draw valid conclusions about how moving federal elections to a weekend would affect voter turnout," the GAO report said.Continue »
In his State of the Union, President Obama challenged America's scientists and engineers to "out-innovate" global competition.
But America's ability to drive economic growth and job creation through innovation is currently hampered by an enormous backlog at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office .
The Patent and Trademark Office grants patents and registers trademarks needed to secure investment capital, build companies, and bring new products and services to the marketplace. But according to data from the Patent Office, there is currently a backlog of 1.2 million patents, over 700,000 which have never even been opened.Continue »
This article was written by attorney and "CBS Evening News" researcher Paula Reid
The bipartisan national debt commission touts medical malpractice reform as a way to contain soaring health care costs. But even if all of these reforms were enacted the total savings would be just a tiny fraction a percent of the total national debt.
The panel focuses on the system through which damages are collected after a person is injured or killed. Malpractice suits are supposed to prevent medical errors and to compensate patients and their families for losses incurred as a result. Critics argue that malpractice suits increase insurance premiums for doctors and result in unnecessary -- and expensive -- tests and services to avoid exposure to lawsuits. This increases the cost of health care.
The bipartisan national debt commission highlights medical malpractice reform as a way to contain health care costs and reduce the deficit, saving taxpayers $17 billion by 2020.
There have been dozens of unsuccessful attempts at malpractice reform over the last decade.Continue »