Yash Roy, Contributing Photographer

This year, Election Day is Tuesday, Nov. 8. Although it’s an off-year for local races in New Haven, voters will have plenty of important decisions to make in the upcoming midterm elections. 

Who’s on the ballot in Connecticut? 

Senators Chris Murphy and Richard Blumenthal and Rep. Rosa DeLauro (CT-3) represent New Haven in Washington, D.C. Blumenthal and DeLauro are running for re-election after two terms and sixteen terms, respectively. Leora Levy is the Republican candidate for senator and Lesley DeNardis is running against DeLauro for the House of Representatives. Most polls favor Blumenthal and DeLauro to keep their seats.

DeLauro told the News that her 2022 campaign will look different after a 2020 election shaped by pandemic restrictions. 

“What we were unable to do the last time is to really be with people, personally, one on one,” DeLauro said. This year, she is able to have a “full-scale campaign organization” that includes “visiting businesses, working with mayors and first selectmen, engaging with the community through town halls.” 

Yash Roy, Contributing Photographer

DeNardis did not respond to requests for comment.

Connecticut’s governor, Ned Lamont, is up for re-election once more after a four-year term. September polls favor him to defeat his Republican opponent, businessman Bob Stefanowski.

Other statewide races, including lieutenant governor, attorney general, secretary of state, treasurer and comptroller, are also taking place in November. 

For the first time in over 15 years, the list of statewide candidates includes a New Haven resident, attorney Erick Russell. Russell is running for state treasurer against Republican Harry Arora, a state representative from Greenwich. 

“I’ve seen firsthand how politics can be used to help people,” Russell told the News. “My background growing up in the city to a family who was very much working class and struggled to make ends meet, I’ve brought that perspective to everything that I’ve done.”

State senators and representatives, who both have two-year terms, are up for election this year. New Haven is represented by two state senators, Martin Looney (D-11) and Gary Winfield (D-10), both of whom are running for reelection. Their Republican opponents are Steve Orosco and John Carlson, respectively. 

Seven state representatives serve parts of New Haven: Patricia Dillon (D-92), Toni Walker (D-93), Robyn Porter (D-94), Juan Candelaria (D-95), Roland Lemar (D-96), Al Paolillo (D-97) and Treneé McGee (D-116). All seven are running for reelection, three of them unopposed.

Most city officials, including alders and the mayor, have two-year terms and were elected last year, so they’re not up for reelection yet. However, Ward 7 Alder Eli Sabin ’22 told the News that he’ll still be involved in voter engagement efforts and campaign events for the Democratic ticket, likely including “door knocking and phone banking.”

“The elections this year are incredibly important,” Sabin said. “We’re going to be doing some get out the vote work over the next couple months as people start tuning in and the election gets closer.”

Connecticut voters will also have to decide on a proposed constitutional amendment to allow early voting. 

Although a similar proposal failed to win a majority in 2014, many states have moved to permit early voting due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and Connecticut is now one of four states that does not allow in-person voting before Election Day.

Yash Roy, Contributing Photographer

How do you vote in New Haven?

In Connecticut, voter registration applications must be postmarked or received at least seven days before an election. Connecticut residents, including college students who reside in Connecticut, can register to vote online.

The state also offers voter registration on Election Day during polling hours, but only at designated Election Day Registration locations. New Haven’s only such location is on the second floor of City Hall, on 165 Church St. 

Voters do not need a photo ID, but do need to bring a form of valid ID that includes their name and either an address, signature or photograph. 

Although polling places legally do not need to be finalized until Oct. 7, New Haven’s list of 2022 polling places is already available. Connecticut voters can look up their polling place online.

Polls will be open from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. Anyone standing in line by 8 p.m. will be allowed to vote. Absentee ballots also must be received by the close of polls. 

How do you vote by absentee ballot? 

Yale students living in New Haven are eligible to vote in Connecticut, but many students prefer to vote in their home state’s elections. 

Voting by absentee ballot usually requires an application process, which varies state by state. Information about requesting an absentee ballot, as well as general advice for voting in your home state, is available on the website of Yale Votes, a nonpartisan organization working to increase civic engagement on campus.

“A lot of states can require that you send a physical form, and often students don’t have access to envelopes and stamps,” Brook Smith ’25, vice chair of Yale Votes, told the News. “People get turned off when you tell them to print something, because that’s a run to the library.” 

To address some of these difficulties, Yale Votes provides envelopes and stamps, and is working to place those materials in residential college offices. Students can get absentee ballots sent to their residential colleges or to P.O. boxes. 

Yale Votes also hosts numerous events to encourage students to register to vote. On Sept. 20, National Voter Registration Day, they placed voter registration tables in every dining hall and on Cross Campus.

“Students are generally very receptive to registering to vote and voting,” Smith said. “It’s just difficult. And we’re really just trying to bridge that gap between desire and access.” 

She advised that students order their ballots as early as possible to avoid any potential last-minute mishaps. Ballots requested in mid-to-late October may not arrive in time to be returned by Nov. 8. 

67 percent of eligible voters in New Haven participated in the 2020 election, according to the Connecticut Secretary of State’s office. 

SADIE BOGRAD
Sadie Bograd covers City Hall. She is also a producer on the podcast Full Disclosure. She is a first year from Kentucky in Davenport College prospectively majoring in Urban Studies.