Primary Day

Polls Open for Conn. Primary Amid Pandemic, Power Outages

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Despite the ongoing power problems and the major changes brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, voters will be casting their ballots in Connecticut's primary on Tuesday.

Polls opened at 6 a.m., but many have already cast their vote with an absentee ballot.

If you're coming to vote, the Secretary of the State wants you to know that polling places are safe. They have distributed thousands of dollars of personal protective equipment to keep them clean. There will be hand sanitizer and each voting booth will be spaced six feet apart.

This year, the state gave Democrats and Republicans the option for absentee voting absentee because of COVID-19 and 300,000 people in the state took advantage of it.

But, with the overload of ballot requests, the post offices in Hartford were getting backlogged and some voters were not getting their ballots until as late as this weekend.

That combined with Tropical Storm Isaias that knocked out power to thousands is why Governor Ned Lamont allowed voters to mail their ballots. As long as they are received by Thursday, they will be counted.

You don't have to put the ballots in the mail. The state has drop boxes at every town hall across the state and you can drop your absentee ballot in there.

As of noon, there appeared to be a substantial number of voters using the ballot drop boxes, according to Secretary of the State Denise Merrill. She said turnout at the polls for in-person voting appeared light.

There are seven polling places still without power, but Merrill said they all have generators and will be operational.

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