Merrill calls for abolition of party loyalty tests

Secretary of the State Denise Merrill (CTNJ file photo)
Secretary of the State Denise Merrill (CTNJ file photo)

HARTFORD, Conn. – A state law that allows registrars to impose a loyalty test on voters should be stripped out of the statute book, Secretary of State Denise Merrill said.

“I really don’t think it’s appropriate,” said the second-term Democratic overseer of state elections.

Merrill said the recent decision by Brookfield’s Republican registrar to remove Jane Miller from GOP rolls for running on the Democratic ticket for a Board of Education seat highlighted the need for reform. She said elections officials should be non-partisan rather than enforcers of party discipline.

An obscure state law, apparently in place for more than a century, allows a registrar to consult with the political party chairman in the town to determine if someone has been disloyal. If they both agree, the registrar can throw them off the party’s rolls.

See the complete story at CT News Junkie.


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