By Laura Wolf & Paul Willis,
To vote in the Democratic or Republican primary in April you must be a member of that party. In the past, many voters came to a primary only to be told that unaffiliated and minor party members can not vote in the primary. Residents who are currently unaffiliated have until noon the day before the primary to enroll. Same day registration does not apply to primaries, it must be done prior to the primary. To be eligible to vote in the presidential primary on Tuesday, April 26, you must be registered as a Democrat or Republican. Voters are encouraged to check their party affiliation online 24/7 at www.sots.state.gov
In Connecticut those who are currently 17-years-old but will turn 18 by Nov. 8 can participate in the primary if they register with a party by the cutoff dates listed below. For all primaries in the state of Connecticut, you must be a party member of the party you wish to vote for. State party rules prohibit cross voting in another political party’s primary. Unaffiliated voters are not allowed to vote in primaries. Forty percent of Granby voters are currently unaffiliated, 32 percent are Republican, 26 percent are Democrats and one percent are minor party members.
To gain party affiliation, go online, fill out a voter registration card and check the box marked “party enrollment change” and write in a political party. The website is available 24/7 until the postmark and online deadline of April 21 at: https://voterregistration.ct.gov/ The in-person deadline is noon on April 25—the registrar’s office is open from 9 a.m. to noon. Party membership does not cost anything and party members are not obligated to vote along party lines. Unfortunately, the deadline to switch from one party to another has already passed. Unaffiliated and new voters who register as Democrat or Republican by noon the day before can participate in the April 26 primary.
The Secretary of State will announce on February 16 the candidates who qualified to be on the ballot. Petitioning candidates have until March 4 to file their petition pages. On March 22, Denise Merrill will announce the order that the national candidates will appear on each ballot. Sample ballots should be available for viewing on the SOS website: www.sots.state.ct.us
Granby Democratic and Republican Town
Committees will hold Party Caucus
March is a busy time for potential November candidates to gain party support and campaign funds. In March, each town will hold two caucuses, one Republican and one Democrat, for party members to vote on the town delegates to send to their State and District party conventions in May. At these conventions the party candidate endorsement selections are made. A primary in August will occur should a potential candidate choose to contest their party’s nominee from these state conventions.
This year, with so much interest in the November Presidential Election, the registrars are predicting at least one race will be contested in August for both parties. The town delegates chosen in the March caucus to attend the May conventions can be committed to a particular candidate, or can be unaffiliated. To participate and vote in the March caucuses, you need to be a party member. Unaffiliated and unregistered voters can register with a party by noon the day before the caucus to be eligible to participate. (Switching parties requires a 90-day waiting period before attaining party privilege.) Both caucuses will be held on Thursday, March 24. Legal notices will be printed in local newspapers a minimum of five days before these meetings. On the ballot in November will be seats for the US Senate, US House, 62nd Representative and State Senate (7th for District 1 and 8th for District 2). As of Jan. 4, 2016, the Secretary of State is issuing nominating petitions for any minor party or unaffiliated candidates to petition for a slot on the November 8, ballot. The delegates to attend the National Conventions to choose a Presidential Candidate are selected in the Presidential Preference Primary held on Tuesday, April 26.
Pollworkers are Urgently Needed
Lots of pollworkers will be needed for the April 25 Referendum and April 26 Presidential primary, as well as the Aug. 9 Federal primary and for the Presidential election Nov. 8. Training sessions will begin in March and are held prior to each event as needed. If you would like to participate, please register for the new training by sending an e-mail to the Registrars at: email@example.com
Please Vote at the April 25 Budget Referendum!
On Monday, April 25, the Town Budget Referendum will be held in the Town Hall Meeting Room in Granby’s Town Hall, 15 North Granby Rd. The polls will be open from 12 p.m. to 8 p.m. As with all opportunities to vote, please bring an ID, preferably a photo ID to be checked off of our official voter list. The check in tables will be separated four ways based on street address, not last name. As in the past, non-registered but otherwise eligible voters, who are Granby property owners will also be allowed to vote but will need to fill out a special form at the assessor’s table. Absentee ballots can be filed in person with the Town Clerk prior to the voting hours, not during the referendum.
Wednesday, March 23, noon deadline for unaffiliated and new voters to register with a party to participate in the March 24 Caucus Registrars’ Office is open 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Tuesday, April 5, is the first day absentee ballots for the Presidential Primary are available.
Thursday, April 21, is the online and postmark deadline for new and unaffiliated voters to register with a major party to be eligible to vote in the Presidential Primary
Monday, April 25 at noon is the in person deadline for new and unaffiliated voters to register to enroll in a major party to be eligible to vote in the Presidential Preference Primary. The Registrar’s Office will hold a special office hours 9 a.m. to noon.
Stop by to register to vote, to determine your voting district or to make corrections in person at the Registrars’ Office in the Town Hall every Wednesday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Please note that voter registration forms Questions? Please contact the registrars, Laura Wolfe and Paul Willis: office phone number/voice mail: 860-844-5322 and e-mail address: firstname.lastname@example.org