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Early Voting Proposal Passes House with a Supermajority; Moves to Senate

Secretary of the State Denise Merrill’s Early Voting proposal can go before voters as early as 2020

HARTFORD, CT – Secretary of the State Denise Merrill’s proposal for Connecticut to join the 39 other states who have adopted Early Voting has received a supermajority vote of 125-24 in the Connecticut House of Representatives.

“Tonight’s vote is a strong, bipartisan statement in favor of making voting easier for voters. Ultimately, this is not a question of partisanship, it’s one of improving the voter experience,” said Merrill. “Connecticut has fallen behind other states in removing the barriers that can make it harder for our voters to cast their ballots. Early Voting is a voter-centric reform that helps ensure that every eligible person in Connecticut can easily register, and every registered voter can conveniently vote.”

If the proposal also passes the Connecticut Senate with a 75% supermajority, the initiative would appear on the ballot at the 2020 general election, allowing voters to decide if they want the ability to vote prior to Election Day.

Speaker of the House Joe Aresimowicz (D- Berlin) and Majority Leader Matt Ritter (D-Hartford) said in a joint statement, “Voting is the foundation of our democracy and we have a responsibility to encourage more participation. An Early Voting process leading up to Election Day is an important part of this ongoing challenge. The more people that are able to vote, the stronger we are as a society.”

“I am pleased to see this bill move forward in the legislative process. Early voting is critical for increasing civic engagement, which is the cornerstone of our democracy” said State Representative Dan Fox (D-Stamford), who is the House Chair of the Government Administration and Elections Committee. “This piece of legislation removes some barriers to the electoral process to ensure that every voter has the opportunity to exercise this fundamental right, regardless of their personal and work schedules.”

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