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Responsive Gov’s Grade TL;DR

Once again, the Connecticut General Assembly continued to take steps towards making the state’s election laws more voter friendly. In addition to creating a 14-day early voting period with same-day registration, the State Voting Rights Act became law. The Assembly also passed the proposed constitutional amendment to establish no-excuse absentee voting for the second time and it will now go on to voters to approve in 2024. Because of the significant progress made this year, Connecticut was given an A on this year’s progress report.

Looking Back

Where Connecticut Started at the Beginning of 2023

  • Automatic Voter Registration: Partial AVR
  • Online Voter Registration: DMV ID
  • Same-Day Registration: No
  • Restoration of Rights: Prison Disenfranchisement
  • Vote by Mail: Excuse-Only
  • Electronic Registration Information Center Participation: Yes
  • Early Voting Opportunities: No
  • ID Requirements: ID Requested, but Not Required

Relying on the Cost of Voting Index for Connecticut as of 2022, we considered the state a middle tier state for pre-existing voting policy and compared its 2023 activity against other middle tier states.

How Our Tier Compares

  • COVI (2022): 30th
  • EPI Score (2020): 20th
  • CLC State Scorecard (2022): 6/10
  • MAP Democracy Rating (2022): FAIR

2023: This Past Year

Legislative Action

During the 2023 session, the Assembly continued to make major pro-voter improvements to the state’s election laws.

  • H 6941, the state budget bill, also included provisions to establish the State Voting Rights Act which expands access to voting. Among other requirements, it establishes a preclearance process that certain jurisdictions with a history of voting rights violations must follow before making changes to their existing election policies and expands language access materials and voter assistance.
  • H 5004 creates a 14-day early voting period and authorizes same-day registration during the early voting period.
  • HJR 1 proposes a constitutional amendment to create no-excuse absentee voting in the state. As this is the second time it has passed the Assembly, it will now go before the voters in 2024.
  • H 6870 requires clerks to begin collecting ballots from drop boxes on a daily basis as soon as ballots go out to voters.

Implementation Action

  • Connecticut is working on implementation of an automatic voter registration system at Medicaid (Access Health CT and Department of Social Services). While delayed from the initial implementation deadline, the agencies are working towards an important expansion of voter registration opportunities to eligible people.