A1:Enrolling in a political party allows you to vote in that party’s primary election. The purpose of a Primary Election is for the voters aligned with a party to select the candidate they want running on that party’s ticket in the General Election. Important Note: In a general election, you can vote for a candidate from any political party. You do not have to vote for someone running from the party you are aligned with.
A2:No, you do not have to enroll in a political party in order to register or to vote. However, if you would like to vote in a Primary Election in the state of Connecticut, you will need to be enrolled in a political party to vote in that party’s Primary.
A3: If you are currently unaffiliated (not registered to a political party), you can register again, using the same process as for registering in the first place. There is a five-day waiting period to change from unaffiliated to a party of your choice, so this must be completed at least five days before a primary election. See the “FAQs – Registration” for details about your options for how and where to (re)register.
A4: You can switch your party just about any time and as many times as you like. You do it by registering again. However, there is a three-month waiting period, so this must be completed at least three months prior to a Primary Election. See “FAQs – Registration” for details about your options for how and where to (re)register.
A5: If you want to do more to influence the political process than just cast a ballot every year, you may consider joining a political party. If you are interested in running for office, it helps to be registered with a political party. The two main parties have the infrastructure in place to support you. (Ex. Local Democratic and Republican town committees endorse candidates for elected office so they appear on the top lines of the ballot). Several elected positions in Stamford require members of each party to fill the seats. Also, if you want to serve on a local board or commission, it helps to be registered with a political party in order to be appointed.
©League of Women Voters of Stamford
Last edited October 15, 2020