Ceci Maher

State Senator

Ceci Maher

Deputy President Pro Tempore

Working Together For Our Communities

May 31, 2023

Sen. Maher Votes for Senate Passage of No-Excuse Voting Bill and Early Voting Legislation

HARTFORD – Today, state Senator Ceci Maher (D-Wilton) voted to advance two popular pieces of legislation crucial to creating more ease of access at the polls. The first, no-excuse absentee ballot voting will remove the Connecticut constitution’s current, multiple restrictions on absentee voting and allow for “no-excuses” absentee voting if Connecticut residents approve of that when the question is placed on the 2024 general election ballot. The second, early voting establishes a framework for early, in-person voting for all general elections, primaries, and special elections in Connecticut held on or after January 1, 2024.

“This is a great day for democracy in our state as well as the many voters who overwhelmingly support both early voting and no-excuse absentee voting and I am proud to support it,” said Sen. Maher. “We are providing Connecticut voters with increased access to the polls and bolstering our democracy. When we make participation more accessible, we position residents a real opportunity to have a voice in their government, their communities, and their state. I am glad we got this done.”

No-Excuse Absentee Voting

Under current Connecticut law, voters can only vote by absentee ballot if they’re going to be out of town on Election Day, sickness, if they’re on active military duty, because of a religious prohibition, or if they are poll workers who will be working all day in another town.

But 27 other U.S. states already allow for no-excuse absentee voting, including the deep Red Republican states of Arizona, Florida, Idaho, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Dakota and Wyoming.

On a related matter, Last fall, 60% of Connecticut residents voted to amend the state constitution to allow for early voting.

Early Voting

The Democrat-led state Senate this evening gave final passage to House Bill 5004, “AN ACT IMPLEMENTING EARLY VOTING.”

Democrats passed the bill in the House and Senate after 60% of Connecticut voters approved of an early voting change last fall to the state constitution. Forty-six American states already allow some form of early voting.

Specifically, the bill requires a 14-day early voting period for general elections, a seven-day period for most primaries, and a four-day early voting period for special elections and presidential preference primaries.

Every city and town in Connecticut must establish at least one early voting location and may establish more. Early voting locations must be open from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., including weekends, except that on the last Tuesday and Thursday before the election, the locations must be open from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.