Guilford residents receive absentee ballot applications they never asked for; investigation into legality ongoing


GUILFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — Absentee ballot applications were sent out to some Guilford residents, but they never asked for one and some didn’t want one in the first place. Now there is concern it could be a violation of campaign regulations.

It could be a couple of dozen, or it could be hundreds, even thousands of these applications for absentee ballots. They were sent out in the mail, and you’re allowed to do this to some degree, but the secretary of the state has weighed in on it saying this could be breaking the law.

RELATED: Deadline to request absentee ballot for CT fall elections approaching

A packet went out to some voters in the town of Guilford. Inside there was advice on how to vote for Democratic candidates and issues in the upcoming election for the school board.

Also included was a completed absentee ballot application that had the resident’s name, address, and birthdate already filled in.

Secretary of the State Denise Merrill said they have had complaints, and the complaints need to be taken up with the State Elections Enforcement Commission.

On Thursday, the Secretary of the State’s office issued a letter to state election regulators. In it, the secretary’s Director of Elections admits “a miscommunication” to campaign operatives about a signature rule.

News 8 learned there may be as many as a dozen towns affected. Despite the mistake, voters can receive absentee ballots and send them in.

State election enforcement officials will have to decide whether an investigation is warranted.

There was a fairly large crowd gathered on the green Wednesday evening to have a news conference and to show News 8 the request for an absentee ballot form. People were very upset at the gathering. They said this is Guilford where everybody knows their neighbor, it’s a small town with small-town politics.

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