CT Law

Legislative Wrap-Up: One recommended bill passes – Electronic Check-in

It is often tricky to navigate the course of bills stuffed into other bills. At this point, as far as we can tell none of the bills we supported or opposed passed individually. We have scanned the 314 page ‘implementer bill’ checking each section and found only one bill that passed, one that we recommended – Electronic Check-in.

Testimony on three bills – FOI is an issue in elections too

Today I testified on three elections bills before the Government Elections and Administration Committee (GAE). There was also testimony against another assault on Freedom Of Information (FOI). Very appropriate since access to information, transparency, public accountability, and serving the public played a role in my testimony on each bill.

The Downside(?) Of Clear Election Laws

To paraphrase Einstein, “Laws should be as simple as possible, but no simpler”

Speed Up Election Results – Not so fast, with another half-baked solution

UPDATED, With two additional views. And a CORRECTION.
We half agree with the Courant and the Secretary of the State. We have supported the idea, applauded the start that the Secretary took, yet there are problems with the system as proposed, and even more problems with the some of the views and ideas in the Courant’s Editorial. Yet, one half-baked manual system does not deserve a half-baked automated one to solve the problems.

We would like to see the Secretary and the Courant Editorial Board close a polling place and get the data in via smart phone, or close absentee ballots and report via laptop. We will help time them and transparently provide the video on YouTube.

We also remind readers that the Courant is one of the newspapers that led the fight to require expensive paper legal notices instead of allowing for web based notices.

Connecticut Deserves a Fully Transparent and Deliberative Legislature

Last week, Fresh Talk from the Courant provides a partial case for a full-time Legislature.We agree with the basic reasons presented in the argument, yet there is more that should be required of a full-time, close to adequately compensated legislature.

ACLU Forum on Electoral Dysfunction

On Wednesday night I participated on a panel in Waterford, CT on Electoral Dysfunction, sponsored by the ACLU, Common Cause and the LWV. It was a very good discussion with a variety of views from the panel, a wide range of excellent questions, and unsurpassed moderation. In the near future we may have video available. I promised to provide more information here on the topics covered.

Others Weigh In On Election Reforms

Last week Secretary of the State Denise Merrill weighed in at her press conference on, as the Courant headlines, how “Reforms Could Boost Voter Participation”. Also weighing in was Melissa J. Russell, President of ROVAC (Registrars Of Voters Association, Connecticut).

A Tale in two Courant Editorials

Where we disagree with the Courant, is that we believe ballots deserve the same level of protection as money and supplies, that the need for verification applies equally to private employees, public employees, and public officials. We are not so sure of trust part of ‘trust but verify’, we would ‘verify sufficiently to deter and trust’.

Supreme Court to decide ballot layout and sovereign immunity

I am not a lawyer, however: The law reads like the Secretary of the State is correct in interpreting the law. But it will be a tough precedent if the court accepts the sovereign immunity argument – I would think that would make it harder to sue over any election issue, including when the Secretary has declared an election winner. UPDATED

We still disagree with the Courant on reforming the office of registrar

The comprehensive solution is to “Do for Elections what we have done for Probate“. Consolidation, Professionalization, and Regionalization. Not a panacea, but in our opinion a prerequisite. And change it in the Legislature by following the requirements of State law.

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