Secretary of the State Denise Merrill wants as many people to vote as possible; among those ways are early voting or no-fault absentee balloting. Both of those methods, she believes, will draw in those under 35, who are least likely to vote. “Most other states, you don’t need an excuse to get an absentee ballot,” she told the New Haven Register’s editorial board Wednesday. However, both single-day voting and requirements for absentee balloting are enshrined in the state Constitution. The General Assembly has approved the changes twice, as is required, and now the constitutional question will be on the 2014 state ballot. Then the issue goes back to the legislature to figure out how to set it up.
There are kinks in the early-ballot system. “People feel they get preyed upon by unscrupulous candidates or parties,” Merrill said, and there have been abuses in the past of poll workers filling out absentee ballots. “We’d really have to look at a different system, one that’s more simple,” she said.
One innovation that Merrill opposes so far is online voting (though not online registration). “I am very skeptical of that” because of the potential of fraud and hacking. Pilot programs in West Virginia and for military in the District of Columbia have shown online voting is not ready for a wide roll-out, she said.
Full Article: Merrill, state’s top voting official, wants early ballots.