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Some type of election in Connecticut occurs annually in each of the state’s cities and towns, the exact type of which is dependent on the year. Elections for federal and statewide offices occur in even-numbered years, while municipal elections occur in odd-numbered ones.


Offices elected by the people of Connecticut[edit]




Elections for local government include elections for municipal leadership positions (such as mayor or first selectman), legislative bodies (such as a city council or a board of aldermen), and other elections for various municipal positions and boards and commissions, as governed by each municipality’s respective charter and/or ordinances. Of the 169 towns and cities in the state, all hold municipal elections in odd-numbered years, and most hold them on the traditional Election Day in November. Fifteen[5] communities in the state, however, hold their municipal elections in May.

Unlike in most U.S. states, there is no form of county government in Connecticut. The eight counties in the state now exist solely for geographical purposes. Governing at the county level was abolished in the state in 1960, and its last holdover, county sheriffs, were eliminated by an amendment to the "state constitution in 2000.

Party primaries[edit]

The state of Connecticut has a "closed primary system, whereby only electors enrolled in a political party can vote in their party’s primary election. A registered Republican, for example, is only allowed to participate in Republican primaries, while a voter not affiliated with any political party (called an “unaffiliated” voter in the state) is not allowed to vote in any party primary.

Party affiliation in Connecticut[edit]

The majority of Connecticut voters are affiliated with either of the two major political parties, but the "plurality of voters have no party affiliation.

Connecticut voter registration and party enrollment as of October 26, 2016[6]
Party Active voters Percentage
Unaffiliated 831,436 39.59%
"Democratic 790,188 37.63%
"Republican 452,243 21.54%
"Independent 21,216 1.01%
"Libertarian 2,561 0.12%
"Green 1,827 0.09%
"Working Families 323 0.02%
24 other minor parties without
statewide enrollment privileges
226 0.01%
Total 2,100,020 100%

Recent and upcoming elections[edit]



Other voter responsibilities[edit]

Connecticut has no system of "initiative or "referenda at the statewide level, but any proposed amendment to the state constitution, after having first been passed by both houses of the state legislature in accordance with Article XII of the Connecticut Constitution, must be ratified by the people of the state via a ballot question. Additionally, in accordance with Article XIII, every 20 years (or 20 years after a constitutional convention was last called for) citizens of the state shall be allowed to vote on whether a constitutional convention to amend or revise the state constitution should be called.

The most recent constitutional amendment proposition, concerning if 17-year-old pre-registered electors should be allowed to vote in party primaries if they would be turning 18 on or before the date of the general election, was submitted to voters on November 4, 2008. Voters passed the amendment 900,491 to 508,396,[7] and it became effective as Amendment XXXI on November 26, 2008. The most recent constitutional convention question also appeared on the ballot on November 4, 2008, and the call for a convention was rejected 847,518 to 579,904.[7]

While there is no statewide initiative or referenda, many municipalities have some form of it for issues of local concern. Additionally, five municipalities[8] afford voters the right to "recall local elected public officials, a practice that does not extend to state offices.[9]

Filling U.S. Senate vacancies[edit]

On June 26, 2009, Connecticut governor M. Jodi Rell signed into law a bill which requires that a special election be called under most circumstances should a vacancy occur in either of Connecticut’s two U.S. Senate seats.[10] Prior to this law, the governor of the state had the right to appoint a replacement to fill such vacancies.

Since passed, this law has not yet been used.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Probate Court Jurisdiction". State of Connecticut – Judicial Branch. Archived from the original on June 17, 2010. Retrieved June 24, 2010. 
  2. ^ http://www.cga.ct.gov/2011/pub/chap146.htm#Sec9-190.htm
  3. ^ "Bysiewicz Swears In First-Ever Third Party Registrar of Voters Elected in Connecticut" (PDF). Office of the Connecticut Secretary of the State. January 7, 2009. Archived from the original (PDF) on October 14, 2012. Retrieved June 24, 2010. 
  4. ^ http://www.yourpublicmedia.org/content/wnpr/hartford-chooses-three-registrars-voters
  5. ^ "Winners of Elections for Mayor, First Selectman or Warden - Monday, May 2, 2005" (PDF). Office of the Connecticut Secretary of the State. Retrieved June 24, 2010. 
  6. ^ "NEW RECORD FOR NUMBER OF PEOPLE REGISTERED TO VOTE IN CONNECTICUT!" (PDF). Connecticut Secretary of State. Retrieved December 10, 2016. 
  7. ^ a b "November 4, 2008 State Election Constitutional Questions on the Ballot" (PDF). Office of the Connecticut Secretary of the State. Retrieved June 24, 2010. 
  8. ^ McCready, Brian (June 16, 2010). "Parents aim to oust Milford board member". NHRegister.com. Retrieved June 24, 2010. 
  9. ^ "Paul Newman Could Become Westport Selectman in Recall Election". WestportNow.com. August 10, 2003. Retrieved June 24, 2010. 
  10. ^ Office of the Governor (June 26, 2009). "Gov. Rell Signs Bill Requiring Elections to Fill U.S. Senate Vacancies". Ct.gov. Retrieved June 24, 2010. 

External links[edit]

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