Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the rules to apply for absentee ballots in Connecticut have changed.
All voters registered as Democrats or Republicans are eligible to apply for an absentee ballot for the Tuesday, August 11 primary. The new rules were put in place to allow people a means to avoid voting places in light of the pandemic.
Applications were mailed out in several batches starting on June 26. The last batch went out on Monday, July 6.
If voters did not receive an application this week, they should contact their local registrar of voters in the town in which they live. They should confirm the following:
- They are a registered voter
- They are registered as a Democrat or Republican
- They are not on the inactive voter list.
Some people may be registered as independent, but not realize that puts them in the Independent Party, and that’s not the same as unaffiliated. Unaffiliated means they have no party affiliation.
Voters have until August 6 to change their party affiliation to vote in either the Democratic or Republican primary. New voters also have until that date to register with a party.
What do I do if an absentee ballot came for someone who has died or moved?
- Write return to sender on envelope and drop in the mail.
- Contact town registrar
- Deaths – If someone died in state, the Department of Public Health notifies the town registrar who will remove the voter from the rolls. If they die out of state, the town might not get the notification from the other location. In that case, after two federal election cycles with no voting, the name goes on the inactive list and a post card is sent out. If it’s not acted on, or is returned with notification that the person is deceased, the name is removed.
- A program that Connecticut and 29 other states participate in called ERIC, helps notify about people who move and keeps records up to date.
Applications that are returned to the town's registrar, (one from each party) and checked against the current rolls. The absentee ballot is sent out to that voter. When the voter returns the ballot to the town, it is again checked against the rolls and that name is removed from the list that goes to the polling place on Election Day.
Who is on the ballot for August 11?
Democrats and Republicans will see different ballots in the same town depending on who is running to get on the ballot in November. Those ballots will be finalized by July 20.
All ballots will have the following candidates for President:
- Joe Biden
- Bernie Sanders
- Tulsi Gabbard
- Donald Trump
- Roque “Rocky” De La Fuente
Other key dates
August 10, 2020 Monday 12:00 noon In-person enrollment deadline, for new voters and unaffiliated voters enrolling in a party in person at Town Hall, for voting in primary.
August 11, 2020 Tuesday Presidential Preference Primary. Polls open from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m.
How do I vote absentee?
For the August 2020 Presidential and State Primary, all voters can vote by absentee due to the COVID-19 virus, pursuant to the Governor's Executive Order No. 7QQ. Just check the COVID-19 box on the application.
Expansion of Absentee Ballot access –
A— The Office of the Secretary of the State will provide an absentee ballot application to all eligible voters for the 2020 primary and general elections.
B — After processing by their town clerks, those who request absentee ballots will be provided with absentee ballots via a mail house contracted by the Office of the Secretary of the State.
C — Secure drop boxes will be provided to every municipality so that absentee ballots may be deposited by voters.
D — The Secretary of the State will offer a grant program to meet extra costs for processing and personnel which might be required for the town clerks due to increased demand for absentee ballots.
E — Pre-paid postage will be provided so that neither voters nor municipalities have to pay to mail absentee ballots and absentee ballot applications back and forth.
For the August 2020 Primary Election, please use the Application for Absentee Ballot:
For an emergency ballot within 6 days of an election, please use the Emergency Application for Absentee Ballot: