CT officials call on Lamont to consider mail-in voting for August primary election


(WTNH) — On Thursday, a diverse group of leaders held a virtual news conference in a push for mail-in voting.

Right now, it’s scary just to go to the grocery store. If people are scared to go vote in upcoming elections, it would mean dramatically lower turnout. How do you change that? Let folks vote by mail.

In an Op-Ed in the Hartford Courant back in March, Connecticut Secretary of State Denise Merrill wrote that she recommended to Governor Ned Lamont that he issue the Executive Orders to delay the state’s presidential primary. She also asked Lamont to use his emergency powers to remove the restrictive absentee ballot language in Connecticut’s statutes temporarily, in order to allow more people to be able to vote by mail when the primary is held.

One model would be the state of Ohio. Joe Biden won and about a million and a half people voted after the state lifted restrictions on who could get an absentee ballot. That’s exactly what would have to happen in Connecticut. The other way to go is to do what Wisconsin did with its presidential primary a few weeks ago.

Republicans blocked efforts to postpone it, so people had to vote in person and dozens who went to the polls have now tested positive for COVID-19. This does come down to party politics, as voting in person would mean lower voter turnout, which usually favors Republicans. So across the country, we will see this same fight. Here in Connecticut, the state has already postponed the presidential primary until June 2. The local primaries are scheduled for August 11 right now.

And of course the general election is November 3rd.

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