What to know for Nov. 8: Connecticut’s election day

Lillian Newton, Politics Editor

On Tuesday, thousands of individuals across Connecticut will travel to polling centers across the state to vote in the midterm election. Before you head off to vote, here is everything that you should know about this year’s ballot.

Ballots may vary due to the region a person lives in. Differences include local races as well as contests for the state legislature.

One of the most discussed elections is the rematch between Democratic Gov. Ned Lamont and Republican Bob Stefanowski. Lamont, back in the 2018 election, defeated Stefanowski by just over three percentage points. Currently, Lamont has the highest approval ratings of any Democratic Governor in the nation; this can be largely attributed to his response to the COVID-19 pandemic and Connecticut’s current financial stability. Stefanowski’s campaign, meanwhile, has focused largely on the frustration surrounding inflation, crime and the cost of gas.

Connecticut voters will also vote for a Senate candidate; the candidates running are Democrat Richard Blumenthal, currently serving in the position, versus Republican Leora Levy. Blumenthal is seeking his third six-year term. He is most well known for defending Connecticut’s first ban on military-style rifles and helping to win billions in the 1998 national settlement with the tobacco industry. Levy, a former sugar trader on the commodities market, has created strong ties with Trump politics and calls herself a “political outsider.” She is seeking her first elective office.

All of Connecticut’s congressional seats will be open to new representatives, alongside all statewide offices and all House and Senate Seats.

There is one question on the ballot this year. The question is a legislatively referred constitutional amendment (LRCA) that would allow the legislature to provide for early voting. The question will read “Shall the Constitution of the Senate be amended to permit the General Assembly to provide for early voting?”

A vote of “yes” supports amending the state constitution to allow the state legislature to provide by law or in-person early voting before an election in Connecticut.

A vote of “no” opposes the aforementioned amendment to the state constitution, therefore maintaining that early voting is not authorized by the state.

As of June 2022, 45 states and the District of Columbia have laws that authorize early voting within the state. In such states that allow early voting, an individual does not have to provide an excuse for being unable to vote in person on election day. This amendment has been considered previously; in 2014, voters opposed a constitutional amendment that would have authorized early voting to occur while also removing restrictions on absentee voting. In contrast, the 2022 amendment focuses only on introducing early voting. The 2022 amendment does not authorize the expansion of absentee voting.

Connecticut voters should check the Voter Registration Lookup Connecticut Portal for information on their polling location. Same-day registration is allowed for the General Election. Voters do not need identification and, in most cases, voters are able to sign an affidavit when poll workers ask for an ID.