This Election Day, November 8, Connecticut voters will see a question on their ballot asking them to approve a change to our State Constitution which would allow for Early Voting.

The question will be: Shall the Constitution of the State be amended to permit the General Assembly to provide for early voting?

Voters can vote “yes” or “no.”  A “yes” vote will give the 2023 legislature the authority to start writing the laws to implement early voting. Early voting could then be an option for voters as early as 2024.

The League of Women Voters supports expanding voting options for everyone, and encourages a “yes” vote on the ballot question.

With early voting, Connecticut voters would have the option to vote in-person at designated locations on specified days in advance of Election Day. This would provide voters with more flexibility to cast their ballots without worrying about getting to the polls on Election Day.   

Inflexible work schedules, lack of childcare or transportation, or inclement weather often create challenges for voters. More broadly, it can increase overall voter turnout by providing for more days when voters can vote in person and make lines shorter at the polls on Election Day.

Connecticut is one of only four states (Alabama, Mississippi, New Hampshire, Connecticut) that do not have early voting. Millions of voters throughout our country already have the right to cast their ballots early by voting in the days leading up to Election Day. The experience of these states has shown early voting to be safe and secure. Early votes are securely recorded, counted, and stored, with the same checks and balances as those cast on Election Day.

Early voting is not the same as absentee ballot voting. Absentee voting involves additional steps for voters, first to complete and return a ballot application, and then to submit the ballot itself. Connecticut voters can only vote by absentee for very specific reasons, as written in our State Constitution. Early voting would allow any voter to vote in person on designated days besides Election Day for any reason.

States throughout our country are experiencing the benefits of providing affordable, additional voting days, and so can Connecticut. The League of Women Voters urges Connecticut residents to vote “yes” to increase access to the ballot box for all eligible voters in our state.

Diane Hoffman and Janice Elliott are members of the League of Women Voters of Hamden /North Haven