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News May 9, 2019 - 8:55:20 AM

Lamont and Bysiewicz applaud senate passage of constitutional amendment allowing early voting

By Governor Ned Lamont's office

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HARTFORD, CT - Governor Ned Lamont and Lt. Governor Susan Bysiewicz are applauding the Connecticut State Senate for passing a resolution Wednesday night that will adopt an amendment to the state constitution creating a system of early voting for elections in the state. The resolution was approved in the House late last month.

With today’s vote, the resolution will next need to be ratified by both chambers of the legislature a second time during the 2021 session, after which it can appear on the 2022 ballot for the approval of the state’s voters and then become ratified into the state constitution.

“Creating a system of early voting in Connecticut is a concept that is long past due, and I’m glad that we are on a path to making it easier for every eligible citizen of our state to cast a ballot,” Governor Lamont said. “During the most recent statewide election, we had people waiting in line in the pouring rain, in some cases for several hours, for the opportunity to cast a ballot. In today’s economy, it is not realistic to expect every citizen to be able to go to one specific location during a certain set of hours on a Tuesday to cast their ballot. If we truly want more people to be active participants in our democracy, there are many more things we can be doing to make it easier to vote, and early voting is one of them. Secretary of the State Denise Merrill has been tireless in her commitment to getting this done, and I congratulate her on getting another step closer to implementing this needed reform. While I am disappointed that Republicans in the Senate did not join their House colleagues in voting to send this popular, commonsense reform to the voters in 2020, I am grateful that legislators came together to approve it. I look forward to another positive vote in 2021.”

“The time has finally come for Connecticut to join the 39 other states that allow early voting,” Lt. Governor Bysiewicz said. “Last November, a record number of people showed up to the polls. Unfortunately, however, some of those people had to wait in line, in the rain, just to cast their ballot. That’s not the way a modern, inclusive democracy should work and voters should be allowed more time to exercise this important constitutional right.”

The resolution is HJR 161, Resolution Proposing an Amendment to the State Constitution to Allow for Early Voting and No-Excuse Absentee Voting.

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