HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — The television and radio airwaves have been saturated with candidate commercials soliciting votes. The Aug. 9 Primary Day is fast approaching but a last-minute withdrawal of one of the candidates in the race for secretary of the state is causing some confusion.

Democrats endorsed candidates at their convention back in May. Challengers got enough support at the convention to get on the ballot. This sample ballot shows run-offs for Secretary of the State and Treasurer. The same is true for Republicans.

But that party’s ballot looks different this year after a candidate for secretary of the state dropped out. We stopped in at Hartford City Hall to see for ourselves.

News 8 asked, ” How are you handling that?”

“Because the ballots were printed before he dropped out. We’re instructed to either put a sticker over or to block out the name,” said City Clerk Noel MacGregor of Hartford.

Deputy Secretary of the State Scott Bates tells News 8 that by law there is a window for primary candidates to drop out. “We did get that notice pretty much last minute.”

Logistically, in this case, many municipalities had already printed ballots. Election officials said state laws allow three options. They could either reprint ballots, which is costly, cover the name with a sticker that can jam the tabulator machines, or use a black marker to cross off the name.

“It should be that voters will just see on the ballot the people that are actually running for office.” In Hartford’s case – bipartisanship. The Republican registrar tells News 8 that she and the Democratic registrar pooled staff to cross off the name on all of the ballots,” explained Bates.

Meantime, those absentee ballot drop boxes are back in action. Absentee ballots are now available if you are going to be out of town, if you are sick, caring for a loved one, or are in the military.

“We saw in 2020 that absentee ballot usage went from 5% to 35% of all ballots cast, and we saw record numbers of turnout,” added Bates.

That high general election turnout was driven by the COVID-19 pandemic. In Connecticut, registered active unaffiliated voters outnumber Democrats, Republicans, and minor parties.

There’s a total of 2,257,538 active voters.

In 2018 the August Primary, turnout was 29% among Democrats and 32% among Republicans.

This year the race for U.S. Senate is expected to boost the 2022 Primary turnout for Republicans. In order to participate in the August primary, you have to be a registered Democrat or Republican.

News 8 will hold an exclusive debate on the Republican U.S. Senate race Tuesday, July 24, at 8 pm. Stream it live on WTNH.com or watch it on our sister station, WCTX.