The United States Department of Justice filed a lawsuit today against the Secretary of State Susan Bysiewicz for failing to send absentee ballots to the military and uniformed officers oversees in time for Aug. 8 primary.
In order to see that the voting rights of the men and women serving the United States are not violated the lawsuit that the Secretary of State’s press release called an “agreement”, seeks to keep the final ballot count open until Aug. 25.
Bysiewicz's office sent out four different letters to Connecticut Town Clerks reminding them of this law and to make sure the necessary absentee ballot forms were sent out to military members stationed overseas. However, as many as seventy-five towns still did not send the ballots out prior to late July, "which raised the possibility of those ballots not arriving home by August 8th and not being counted." (Stuart)
I hope it doesn't become an issue. The last thing Lieberman-Lamont needs is some post-election tension.
Stuart, Christine. "Oops! Absentee Ballots Went Out Too Late for Aug. 8." CT News Junkie 2 August, 2006.
Update from Gabe:
Good news via a DOJ press release:
The Justice Department today announced that it has reached an agreement with Connecticut officials to help ensure that military and overseas voters have an opportunity to participate fully in the state’s Aug. 8, 2006, federal primary election.
The agreement, which was approved by the federal district court in New Haven today, allows eligible military and overseas voters who did not receive an absentee ballot to download and return a Federal Write-In Absentee Ballot, provides extra time for the receipt, and requires counting of ballots and media publicity regarding these provisions.
This agreement will allow military and overseas voters to get their ballots in without having to wait for the town clerks to ship them out. Instead, they can go online, download a generic ballot, and send it in immediately.
On note about the potential contesting of the Senate primary: I spoke to my Councilperson tonight who was very concerned about people not being sure where to go to vote because Hamden had rezoned the precincts since November 2005. If this election is close, I would expect provisional ballots to be challanged for weeks.