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Visconti Will Remain On Ballot, 55 Percent Turnout Predicted

by | Nov 3, 2014 1:35pm () Comments | Commenting has expired | Share
Posted to: Election 2014

Hugh McQuaid Photo Despite his political endorsement of Republican Tom Foley, petitioning candidate Joe Visconti technically remains a candidate for governor, Secretary of the State Denise Merrill said Monday during a press conference.

Visconti, a conservative unaffiliated candidate, announced Sunday that he was dropping out of the race and encouraged his supporters to vote for Foley. Even with Visconti’s exit, Foley trailed Democratic Gov. Dannel P. Malloy by 3 points in a Quinnipiac University poll released Monday.

Merrill, the state’s chief election official, told reporters that questions have been “pouring into” her office since Visconti’s announcement. She said Visconti requested that nothing be formally changed.

“We have spoken to Mr. Visconti and, regardless of his political statements regarding Mr. Foley, he has told my office directly that he is not technically withdrawing from the governors race,” Merrill said. “The ballots are printed and set and the optical scan voting machines have been programmed. Mr. Visconti’s name will stay on all state ballots . . . no one should act to remove his name.”

Despite the questions generated by the candidate’s announcement, Merrill said she was confident that election officials around the state were prepared to open the voting booths at 6 a.m. Tuesday.

Merrill said her office was estimating that about 55 percent of the state’s nearly 2 million registered voters would turn out to the polls. That breaks down to about 1.1 million ballots. Unaffiliated voters make up the largest bloc in Connecticut with 818,389 registered. Meanwhile, the state has 712,985 registered Democrats and 407,520 registered Republicans.

Although Merrill said 55 percent turnout is typical for a midterm election year, it is slightly lower than the turnout in 2010 when Malloy defeated Foley by just 6,404 votes. That year, 57.45 percent of voters cast ballots.

Higher than expected turnout led to problems in some areas like Bridgeport, where election officials did not order enough ballots. Merrill said “we learned some lessons during the 2010 election.”

“New legislation passed in the wake of the problems we had in 2010 ensures that ballots will be ordered in sufficient numbers, I believe,” she said. “The new legislation requires some accountability and oversight from our office on the ballot ordering process. Because ballots are ordered at the local level, the requirement is they report to us the number of ballots they ordered.”

Despite the costs associated with printing extra ballots, Merrill said most cities, including Bridgeport, have opted to print ballots for 100 percent of their registered voters.

“I would say we’re more prepared than we ever have been for voters to head to the polls tomorrow,” she said.

Merrill reminded the public that eligible Connecticut residents can still register to vote on Tuesday at a centralized location in each town. Voters will not be able to register at polling places.

“If you missed all the deadlines, maybe you just moved to the state, maybe you just turned 18, you didn’t get around to it, thought you didn’t have to change it, whatever, if you’re a U.S. citizen, age 18 or older, you can still register to vote tomorrow through Election Day registration,” she said.

Merrill encouraged voters to visit her office’s website, www.sots.ct.gov, for more information and to find out whether they are currently registered and where their polling place is located.

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(14) Archived Comments

posted by: art vandelay | November 3, 2014  5:13pm

art vandelay

How easy it would be to have the polling clerk cross off Visconti’s name prior to handing the ballot the voter.  Instead Visconti’s name will appear where the vote will be “wasted”.  I’m sure the Democrats thought this one hard prior to Denise Merrill making the final decision.  My guess is the Democrats feel it’s to their advantage to have Visconti’s name ON the ballot.  The Ghost of Suzy B is alive and well in the Secretary of State’s Office.

posted by: NoNonsense2014 | November 3, 2014  9:02pm

@ art vandelay: Are you seriously suggesting that it would be OK with you to have poll workers tamper with official ballots? Wow! And it seems that you missed this: “Merrill, the state’s chief election official, told reporters that questions have been “pouring into” her office since Visconti’s announcement. She said Visconti requested that nothing be formally changed.

“We have spoken to Mr. Visconti and, regardless of his political statements regarding Mr. Foley, he has told my office directly that he is not technically withdrawing from the governors race,” Merrill said.”

posted by: SocialButterfly | November 3, 2014  9:04pm

@art vandelay: Please don’t knock it until you get the final voting results. The proof is “in the eating.”

posted by: PamB | November 3, 2014  9:06pm

As someone who worked on the polls and prior to the election days, let me just point out, those ballots are printed and passed out days before the election.  Nobody’s playing any games with a guy who decides on the Sunday, he finally knows he is not going to win anyways, and there is 1 day prior to Election day…..SEE, tis why these little guys should stay out of the races in the first place, they KNOW they are merely using time and money.

posted by: shinningstars122 | November 3, 2014  9:10pm

shinningstars122

LMAO @Art you know you can’t do that.

You want a black marker debacle here in the Nutmeg state Wednesday?

Plus of all the oppressed taxpayers in the state, you honestly want us the taxpayers to pay for all new ballots, or all the OT, less than 48 hours before the election?

I am sure many conservatives and Libertarians will proudly cast their protests votes tomorrow for Visocnti.

He may still get 7%.

posted by: perturbed | November 3, 2014  9:24pm

perturbed

@ art vandelay—you should read the article more carefully.

“We have spoken to Mr. Visconti and, regardless of his political statements regarding Mr. Foley, he has told my office directly that he is not technically withdrawing from the governors race,” Merrill said.

—perturbed

posted by: art vandelay | November 3, 2014  10:45pm

art vandelay

Stan Laurel to Oliver Hardy
“That’s another fine mess you got us into”.

Bud Abbot to Lou Costello
“Who’s on First!  “No What’s on Second”!

Curley, Larry & Moe “Calling Dr. Howard, Dr. Fine Dr. Howard”.

They will all be out in force overseeing the election tomorrow.

posted by: art vandelay | November 3, 2014  10:54pm

art vandelay

On second thought probably NOT a good idea to tamper w/ballots.  To be honest I NEVER trusted this new paper ballot system. Maybe I’m old fashion but when I pulled the lever in the old booth I KNEW my vote was being cast.  I don’t trust these new electronic machines. There is no sound indicating the vote has been cast.  One has to look for the small digital numbers to see if it increases by one.  It’s the only way I know my ballot was counted.  Personally I think this new system STINKS!  It seems we regressed going back to paper.

posted by: Breeze | November 4, 2014  10:11am

When it comes to tampering, I’m old fashioned too, Art. Don’t get me wrong, I like criminal activity as much as the next guy, but I think maybe we just let the voters do their thing. What do you say?

posted by: One and Done | November 4, 2014  10:34am

Looks like it is going to be Hartford this time around where the Dems steal try to steal it.

posted by: SocialButterfly | November 4, 2014  11:03am

@art vandelay:  A negatively poll unpopular Barack Obama has been “a lead balloon” and avoided like a plague by national mid-term Democrats for election, except for a very
desperate Dannel Malloy who reached out for the hand of the president who is documented as doing a number in realistically sinking our country. Obama is doing a bad job of saving our country, and we pray he does not have the ability to save Dannel Malloy from defeat by Tom Foley. Let’s hope that Malloy’s pitch for help from Obama will come back to haunt him.

posted by: art vandelay | November 4, 2014  12:20pm

art vandelay

The Democrats & Malloy were very calculated on three fronts bringing Obama to Bridgeport.  The first was having the rally in Bridgeport which is critical to Malloy’s victory.
Without Bridgeport, Hartford or New Haven, Malloy would loose.
Second, an Obama visit might just put Malloy over the top. Finally if by chance Malloy looses, it would put him in a very good position for a cabinet post.

posted by: art vandelay | November 4, 2014  12:26pm

art vandelay

What concerns me most about this election is voter fraud in our major cities.  This morning I had to produce a driver’s license in order to receive a ballot. I live in a rural town where residency is imperative.  I’m sure the same does not hold true in Hartford, New Haven or Bridgeport. I can guarantee I can walk into a voting center, say I want to vote and NO questions will be asked. I can guarantee polling place personal will do everything possible to get me a ballot.  I do not trust this system one bit.  This is NOT what our founding fathers envisioned.  Connecticut’s voting system is too open for fraud.

posted by: bwg102 | November 4, 2014  1:35pm

Art, you do not need a driver’s license/state ID to vote.  You only need something issued by someone else with your name on it, e.g. credit card or library card.  It’s the town clerk’s job to determine who you are.  At the polls, you only have to show you are who you are claiming to be.  That might be the scariest part of all.

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