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Merrill proposes voting by mail
Jacqueline Rabe, CT MIRROR
February 14, 2011

A bipartisan coalition is pushing for an elections reform package that includes a constitutional amendment to allow early voting by mail.

"We are not on the forefront of this," Secretary of the State Denise W. Merrill said while announcing the reform package with both Republican and Democratic lawmakers standing behind her. She said 35 states currently allow early voting by mail.

The package also includes provisions requiring local registrars to have an emergency plan in place if polling locations run out of ballots or long lines form and granting the secretary of the state the authority to require registrars order more ballots. The changes are aimed at preventing a repeat of the Election Day fiasco of 2010, when Bridgeport and a half dozen other communities ran out of ballots on Election Day, does not happen again.

Leaders of the legislature's elections committee and the chief elections officer introduce an elections reform package

The vote-by-mail proposal would require a constitutional amendment, Merrill said, because the constitution now allows absentee voting only for those who are ill, disabled, out of town on Election Day or barred by their religion from participating in secular activities.

[Please read the rest of this article in the archives at the CT MIRROR website]