With the state primaries approaching and the general presidential election less than a year away, unregistered voters will need to register to vote rather quickly. This is an exciting opportunity for any student at SWHS who will be 18 by the general election on November 3rd, 2020. Under Connecticut law, any student who will be 18 on or before election day, can also vote in the primary elections held on April 28th, 2020. This will apply to over 25% of the student body. As this is the first major election for any of us, we will be looking at the voting registration process for Connecticut.
A student can register to vote, in person, online, or mail in a voter registration form. To register to vote in person you would go to South Windsor Town Clerk’s office at 1540 Sullivan Avenue. The office hours are Monday through Thursday 10am to 1pm, and located on the lower level of the Town Hall. Once registered, the town website includes a voting district street list. This informs voters of their voting locations by their address.
As technology has developed, the voting registration process throughout the country has steadily become simpler. All registration can now be done online in Connecticut at https://voterregistration.ct.gov . To use this system you must have a current and valid driver’s license, learner’s permit or non-driver photo identification issued by the Connecticut Department of Motor Vehicles.
The Connecticut Secretary of State’s Office lists the other voter requirements besides identification. A student must also be a U.S. citizen, a resident of a Connecticut town, have completed confinement and parole if previously convicted of a disenfranchising felony (which is hopefully not the case for any SWHS students), and be at least 17 years old or must turn 18 on or before election day. If someone tries to register to vote and their registration in untrue, you can be convicted and imprisoned for up to 5 years and fined up to $5000.
There are important deadlines approaching including January 28, 2020. This is the last day a voter can change their political party in order to vote in the April 28, 2020 Presidential Primary. This applies to anyone who has previously registered to vote. If you are a new voter, your application must be submitted by the 5th day before a primary or April 23rd, 2020. You may apply in person to your town clerk or registrar until 12:00pm on the last business day before the primary. If you miss the primary, you can still register for the general election if your application is submitted or received by the 7th day before an election, or October 27th, 2020.