elections

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Democrats are working hard to get out the vote across the country, and that now includes a call-in from President Barack Obama to WNPR's The Colin McEnroe Show

Lori Mack / WNPR

Connecticut officials say polling places are busy and some problems have been reported as voters chose candidates for governor, Congress, the state legislature, and other offices. 

Chion Wolf

Ever since 1778 when Thomas Jefferson, revising the laws of Virginia, wrote something called a Bill for the More General Diffusion of Knowledge, there's been an ongoing debate about how to make sure people know what they need to know to participate fully as citizens of this democracy.

As is so often the case with Jefferson, his ideas and words seem visionary and eternal until you poke around in them a little bit and then it gets more complicated especially vis-a-vis who he thought was really fit to lead the American people.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

It's finally here. It is Election Day 2014! For the last year and a half, the field of candidates for governor has been whittled down to Dannel Malloy and Tom Foley (again). Petitioning candidates Jon Pelto and Joe Visconti have come and gone (kind of). And this year's race will go down as one of the nastiest in recent memory. But it's almost over.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Connecticut Governor Dannel Malloy was among early-risers who faced delays voting at Hartford polls. A spokesman for the governor's campaign said Malloy voted at about 7:45 am, 35 minutes after he intended. 

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Secretary of the State Denise Merrill said her office is "more prepared than they ever have been" for election day. 

At her annual press briefing before election day, Merrill said her office has learned a lot since the 2010 election, when Bridgeport officials didn't order enough ballots.

"We now have an emergency plan in every town for elections," Merrill said, "and that's something we didn't have four years ago. That's another result of the 2010 election. Every town has an emergency plan that tells you what to do if the electricity goes off, who's in charge, where's the copy room if you need to copy some ballots -- which is, by the way, protocol." 

A poll released Friday by Western New England University shows strong voter support for keeping the Massachusetts casino law.

The survey found 59 percent of  likely voters plan to vote against repeal of the law that legalized Las Vegas-style gambling and authorized the licensing of casinos in Massachusetts. Just 35 percent say they’ll vote yes on Question 3 on Tuesday’s election ballot.  Polling institute director Tim Vercellotti said the gap has grown since September, when a casino industry backed campaign launched a blitz of  TV ads.

Chion Wolf

This election cycle, the Connecticut Council on Freedom of Information asked candidates to sign a pledge - to oppose weakening the state’s public document disclosure law, and to require that any attempts to weaken the law be subjected to public hearings and debate.  Only 10% of those to whom this pledge was sent have actually signed it, though. 

If you've enjoyed the battle for control of the Senate over the past many months, here's some good news: The drama could well spill over into next month — or even next year.

While Republicans are increasingly optimistic — and Democrats, pessimistic — about their prospects Tuesday, there are plausible scenarios that could have America waiting well beyond Nov. 4 to know which party will have a Senate majority.

Jeff Cohen / WNPR

Kiernan Majerus-Collins is a Democrat from West Hartford. He's gotten two mailers from state Democrats and one from an outside organization, and they want him to know that they're watching his voting habits. 

santiagostudio.com

Latino voters are overwhelmingly more likely to support Democratic candidates than Republicans, but that has been changing in recent years. The national GOP has talked a lot about being more “inclusive”, even as voter ID laws in places like Texas seem aimed squarely at reducing the number of Latinos able to vote.

Christopher Penn / Creative Commons

Voting in one Rhode Island town next Tuesday won't be quick. The Providence Journal reports that voters in Barrington will confront 40 ballot questions proposing changes in how government operates.

Chion Wolf

According to the latest Q-poll, a lot of Connecticut voters don’t like any of the candidates running in the upcoming gubernatorial election. But, they don’t have much choice in that race or any of the other state races that generally have 2 candidates -- maybe three if we’re lucky -- on the menu.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Next Tuesday, November 4, Connecticut is among several states that will ask voters about changing elections laws. The ballot question on amending the Connecticut constitution is the "first" step towards making voting more flexible here.

mgmspringfield.com

Massachusetts voters will get to decide a question on the ballot next week that’s of great interest to Connecticut. Opponents of the state’s law allowing casino gambling have placed a question that asks voters if they want to repeal the measure. 

Toronto Public Library

We’re just over a week away from the November 4 elections, and, so far, we’ve spent a lot of time talking politics here in our state. But what about our neighbors to the north, east, and west? 

Activists in Hong Kong, angered by what they perceive as little progress in talks on democratic reforms with the government, marched to the home of the territory's chief executive to demand his ouster.

On the first day for in-person early voting in Illinois, President Obama went to the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Community Center to cast his ballot.

"I'm so glad I can early vote here," he told the elections worker checking him in.

Election officials in Massachusetts report a surge in new voter registrations ahead of Wednesday’s deadline.

   The number of voters registered in the city of Springfield has increased by 15,000 since 2009, according to Election Commissioner Gladys Oyola who credits voter registration drives by various special interest groups.  But, she cautions that the increase in the number of registered voters is not necessarily a sign of higher interest in the November election.

In recent years, social scientists have tried to find out whether important decisions are shaped by subtle biases. They've studied recruiters as they decide whom to hire. They've studied teachers, deciding which students to help at school. And they've studied doctors, figuring out what treatments to give patients. Now, researchers have trained their attention on a new group of influential people — state legislators.

This story is part of the New Boom series on millennials in America.

The number of pro-democracy protesters in Hong Kong has dwindled today after a weekend that saw dozens of arrests and an angry backlash from business owners whose shops were shut down amid the demonstrations.

The South China Morning Post says: "Protest sites are quiet on Monday as some demonstrators leave for work, others remain and authorities keep their distance."

Monkey Business / Thinkstock

Public opinion polling has a pretty extensive history here in the United States. Since the 19th century, interest groups, researchers, think tanks, media outlets have all used polls to measure the favorability of a wide range of political, social, and economic issues. 

Updated at 8:30 a.m. ET

Hong Kong leader Leung Chun-ying is appealing to pro-democracy demonstrators who've brought parts of the Asian financial hub to a standstill in recent days to halt their campaign "immediately" because, he says, Beijing won't accede to their demands. But protesters have promised to announce a new phase of civil disobedience if reforms aren't forthcoming.

British Prime Minister David Cameron says now that voters in Scotland have rejected independence, he is committed to giving more powers not only to Scotland, but also to "everyone in England, Wales and Northern Ireland."

Scots decide today whether to end 300 years of union with Great Britain and go it alone as they cast ballots in a historic referendum that is sure to have a lasting impact no matter the outcome.

Public opinion polls in recent days have suggested that Scotland is evenly split on the question and that the vote could be extremely close. The options are to vote "yes" or "no" to the question: "Should Scotland be an independent country?"

The results are expected on Friday.

It's lunchtime at Drummond Community High School in Edinburgh. The kids are all wearing the uniform of a smart black blazer, white shirt and blue tie. Some 16- and 17-year-olds are here with their cheese sandwiches and their baked potatoes.

They get to cast ballots Thursday in what looks to be a close vote on whether Scotland will become independent or remain part of the United Kingdom.

Here's what some of them are saying:

"Scotland will be a richer country if there's a 'yes' vote" for independence, says Calum Preston. "It's just a fact."

Chion Wolf / WNPR

On the eve of a vote that could trigger independence after 307 years, Scotland has become a hot topic in the media. What would happen if the vote swings "yes"? Or what would be the consequences if a "no" vote rules?

It's interesting to listen to Americans try to explain tomorrow's Scottish vote to each other. We don't even have a common, settled understanding of the nature of the existing union, and therefore we have a hard time judging what is being proposed.

Screenshot from "Frankenstein"

While the rest of the Northeast was having a September primary day that pointed to voter dissatisfaction with some incumbent Democrats, Connecticut was waiting for a little bit of news about its biggest political race to drop this morning. The new Quinnipiac poll on the Governor’s race is finally out today...and look, it shows voter dissatisfaction with an incumbent Democrat.

CT Senate Democrats

Pressure is growing on Senate Democrats to release more information about the future of Senator Andrew Maynard. Maynard was seriously injured in a fall two months ago, and questions remain about his ability to stand for election in November.

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