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Confused By Voting Rules

To the Editor:

I was waiting until the referendum on accepting the money from the state to replace Sandy Hook School was over so it would not cloud the debate. One question I had before the referendum, one arose out of the mechanics of voting.

Several times I heard it said, and saw it written in The Bee, that accepting this money would not cost us (the taxpayers of Newtown) anything. I spoke to a moderator. I asked if the cost of the election was being charged to the bonded money. I was told they could not answer that question as the conduct of elections was “confidential” and could not be discussed.

So apparently we have secret election procedures that cannot be revealed

There also seem to be different voter rules for Republican and Democrat voters in Connecticut..

When I went in to vote they asked me for photo ID. I said I thought that was discriminatory and you could not require it. I was told that to vote in Newtown you need to show a photo ID. I said aren't you were supposed to give me a provisional ballot. I was told “We do not do that in Newtown.”

So  we have secret election procedures that cannot be revealed, and one set of rules for Republicans and one for Democrats.  I said if I was a Democrat voting for President Obama or Governor Malloy in Bridgeport not only do you not need an ID but photo copied ballots are OK!

 Why is it discriminatory for Texas and South  Carolina  to require photo ID but not for Newtown ?

 Obviously I cannot get the answer to these questions, maybe you or Mr Voket who reports well on local issues can get the answers.

 I guess come November when we vote for first selectperson I will write in Robert Mugabe or Vladimir Putin and just skip the middleman!

Sincerely,

Charles L. Shaw

5 Sturges Road, Newtown               October 9, 2013

More stories like this: referendum, voting rules

Comments

I waited

Well Its been a week. I received a very informative call from the Registrar of Voters (see below) but neither a call or reply through to the Bee from the First Selectperson. I guess the secret is still being held close to the vest.

Thanks where it is due

I would like to thank the Democratic Registrar of voters for responding to my letter. At approximately 630 last evening she called my home and left a message answering my concerns. Unfortunately I was out at the time but it was a lengthy message she left. I will summarize (If I am slightly off please correct me).

1) As to Photo ID required, in Connecticut some ID is required and it may be a utility bill, bank statement or something else with your name and address but does not have to be a photo ID. Provisional ballots are only used in Federal elections and are not used in purely local elections. (I assume they are part of Federal voting laws?)

2) She told me that moderators could only moderate the election with the people there and were not allowed by law to discuss anything to do with the ballot questionor the election. that I understand.

3) As to who is going to pay for the election, she does not know. all the Registrars do is prepare costs and submit them to the town. I guess this means this question is more properly addressed to the Board of Selectmen. Will the costs of this referendum be charged against the bonding monies or is there in fact a cost to the town (no matter how small) to accept this money?

4) As to one set of rules for Democrats and one for Republicans, this was my snarkiness coming through. I am still not sure why the US Justice Department believes requiring ID to vote is discriminatory in some states and not others and why did the Secretary of State allow photocopied ballots and allow rules changes at the last minute in Bridgeport (thus putting Malloy over the top and winning the election) but that is a question for another official.

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