A committee charged with investigating Election Day mishaps began hearing testimony Monday, with employees from the Town and City Clerk’s Office and the Secretary of the State’s Office raising concerns about discrepancies in numbers reported by the city. Ross Garber, one of two attorneys working for the committee, said that in addition to determining what went wrong, the group is looking into whether reports were submitted on time by the city and whether the reports were accurate. “There is a question about the accuracy of the election reports,” Garber said. People were unable to vote at as many as 10 polling places when they opened at 6 a.m. on Election Day because voter registration lists were not delivered on time. Voters had to wait more than an hour at certain locations, and some left without voting, prompting the Democratic Party to seek extended hours.
A Superior Court judge eventually ordered two polling places to remain open an extra half hour. Secretary of the State Denise Merrill and Gov. Dannel P. Malloy were among those who could not immediately cast their votes.
Most of the testimony Monday was based on emails circulated among employees of the clerk’s office and registrars’ office, election reports and other documents. Ted Bromley, a staff attorney in the elections division of the Secretary of the State’s Office, said the total number of people checked off as having voted was inconsistent in documents submitted by the city.
Records displayed at the hearing showed different numbers on various pages of the Hartford reports. Additionally, when filing the original head moderator’s return, Bromley testified, city officials submitted the wrong form.