Justice Department to monitor elections in seven Connecticut cities

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(WTNH)–Election booths all set up, quiet, and ready for tomorrow’s election. It is the calm before the storm, and election officials not taking any chances.

In New Haven, Secretary of State Denise Merrill talked with the registrar of voters. She wants to make sure there are enough people so as not to repeat the chaos and frustration of two years ago, when they ran out of time and people couldn’t register or vote.

“We are concerned that there weren’t enough people to help with election day registration. We’re trying to anticipate that. It’s a little difficult to figure out,” Merrill said.

The Department of Justice says they are sending out 500 employees nationwide to monitor the elections. Connecticut was one of the states chosen. There are seven different towns that will be monitored. The idea is they’re looking for elections violations, and they’re also there to talk to the officials and to lend an ear just in case they have any questions or need interpretations of the guidelines. Beth Kyle, the Republican Registrar of Voters in West Hartford, says the DOJ is there to make sure this election run smoothly.

“We received an email late Friday evening from the Department of Justice letting us know that they will have monitors at a polling place in West Hartford.”

West Hartford was not alone. Hartford, East Hartford, Farmington, Newington, New Britain and Middletown will also have monitors. Kyle says they will be specifically looking at election day registrations and the accessible voting system for blind and deaf people.

“They are given their options on the headphones, and they push the buttons and they put their ballot in the printer and basically it’s a glorified pencil. It marks in the printer and puts on the ballot what they had relayed through the telephone.”

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