CHAPTER 154
PRESIDENTIAL PREFERENCE PRIMARY

Table of Contents

Sec. 9-463. Definitions.
Sec. 9-464. Primary date.
Sec. 9-465. Placement of candidate names on ballot.
Sec. 9-466. Announcement of candidate list.
Sec. 9-467. Issuance of petition.
Sec. 9-468. Circulation, filing and verification of petition.
Sec. 9-469. Tabulation of signatures.
Sec. 9-470. Order of candidate names on ballot.
Sec. 9-471. Notice of primary.
Sec. 9-472. Vacancy on ballot due to candidate death.
Sec. 9-473. Notification by party chairmen of delegates allotted.
Secs. 9-474 and 9-475. Candidate caucuses. Selection of delegate slates.
Sec. 9-476. Conduct of primary.
Secs. 9-477 to 9-481. Tabulation of votes. Delegate affidavit. Convention certification. Vacancy in delegate slate prior to primary. Vacancy in delegate slate following primary.
Sec. 9-482. "Candidate" includes "uncommitted". Determination of total votes cast.
Sec. 9-483. Allocation of delegates pursuant to party formula.
Sec. 9-484. Allocation of delegates pursuant to state formula.
Sec. 9-485. Certification of delegates. Release of delegates.
Sec. 9-486. Caucuses permitted.
Secs. 9-487 to 9-599.

      Sec. 9-463. Definitions. As used in this chapter, unless the context indicates otherwise:

      (1) "At large" means selected on a basis other than from a district;

      (2) "Candidate" means any person whose name is placed, or proposed to be placed, as the case may be, on the primary ballot of a party;

      (3) "Chairman" means the chairman of the state central committee of a party;

      (4) "Delegate" means a person selected by a party to vote at its national convention held for the purpose of nominating such party's candidate for President;

      (5) "District" means a congressional district or other political subdivision of the state;

      (6) "Party" means a political party having the largest or second largest number of enrolled members in this state according to the most recent enrollment records on file in the office of the secretary;

      (7) "President" means the office of President of the United States;

      (8) "Primary" means a presidential preference primary in which any enrolled member of a party is eligible to vote for a candidate for such party's nomination for President;

      (9) "Rules" mean the national rules or regulations governing a party;

      (10) "Secretary" means the Secretary of the State.

      (P.A. 77-535, S. 1; P.A. 79-481, S. 1; P.A. 83-475, S. 36, 43.)

      History: P.A. 79-481 changed Subsec. (b) definition to the effect that any enrolled member of a party is eligible to vote for a candidate for the party's nomination for president rather than to express a preference, substituted in Subsec. (d) the definition for "chairman" as being the "chairman of the state central committee of a party" in place of definition for "candidate caucus", substituted in Subsec. (e) the definition for "delegate" in place of definition for "uncommitted caucus", substituted in Subsec. (f) definition for "district" as meaning "a congressional district" in place of definition for "delegate slate", deleted in Subsec. (g) definition for "national convention" and substituted definition for "president", and added new Subsecs. (h) and (i) containing definitions for "rules" and "secretary" respectively; P.A. 83-475 rearranged order of definitions, replacing alphabetic Subdiv. indicators with numeric indicators, added definition of term "at large" and changed definition of "district" to include other political subdivisions.

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      Sec. 9-464. Primary date. On the first Tuesday in February of each year in which the President of the United States is to be elected, each party shall conduct a primary in each town if the names of two or more candidates are to be placed on such party's ballot in accordance with the provisions of this chapter.

      (P.A. 77-535, S. 2; P.A. 79-481, S. 2; P.A. 83-475, S. 37, 43; P.A. 90-156, S. 8; June Sp. Sess. P.A. 91-3, S. 50, 168; P.A. 95-95, S. 1; P.A. 07-132, S. 1.)

      History: P.A. 79-481 changed the day for the primary to the Tuesday after the fourth Monday instead of the first Monday in March if the name of one or more candidates is to be placed on the ballot and further provided for the costs of conducting primary to be paid as prescribed in new Subsecs. (b) and (c); P.A. 83-475 amended section to require primary only if there are at least two qualifying candidates and to refer to number of voting districts used by towns in last preceding state election; P.A. 90-156 repealed former Subsec. (b) re limitations on reimbursement, relettered Subsec. (c) as Subsec. (b) and amended new Subsec. (b) by basing reimbursement on town's 1984 or 1988 reimbursement, whichever is applicable, plus 3% annually; June Sp. Sess. P.A. 91-3 removed Subsecs. (a) and (b) designators, deleted provision in Subsec. (a) requiring costs of conducting primary in each town to be paid by state in the manner and to the extent prescribed in Subsec. (b), and deleted Subsec. (b) in its entirety; P.A. 95-95 changed primary date from the Tuesday after the fourth Monday in March to first Tuesday in March; P.A. 07-132 changed presidential primary month from March to February, effective June 25, 2007.

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      Sec. 9-465. Placement of candidate names on ballot. The name of a candidate shall be placed on the ballot at a primary of a party either: (a) By direction of the secretary when he determines, within the time specified in section 9-466, that the candidacy of such person for such party's nomination for President is generally and seriously advocated or recognized according to reports in the national or state news media, unless such candidate files a request as provided in section 9-466; or (b) by petition to the secretary as provided in sections 9-467, 9-468 and 9-469.

      (P.A. 77-535, S. 3; P.A. 79-481, S. 3.)

      History: P.A. 79-481 clarified that the candidacy is "for such party's nomination for president".

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      Sec. 9-466. Announcement of candidate list. The secretary shall, at ten o'clock a.m. on the seventy-eighth day preceding the day of the primary, publicly announce a list of candidates whose names are to be placed on the ballot of each party at such primary pursuant to subsection (a) of section 9-465. Forthwith upon announcing such list, said secretary shall notify each such candidate, by registered mail with return receipt requested, that his name will be included on the ballot unless he files with the secretary, not later than twelve o'clock p.m. of the fortieth day before the primary, a written request, signed by the candidate, to the following effect: "I request that my name be omitted from the ballot at Connecticut's forthcoming .... (name of party) presidential preference primary". The name of any candidate who files a request as provided by this section, within the time specified, shall be omitted from the ballot, but no such withdrawal shall be honored if it is received later than the time specified by this section.

      (P.A. 77-535, S. 4; P.A. 79-481, S. 4; P.A. 94-209, S. 1; P.A. 07-132, S. 2.)

      History: P.A. 79-481 deleted provision for announcement of additional candidates to be placed on the ballot prior to four o'clock p.m. of the forty-sixth day before the primary; P.A. 94-209 changed day of announcement from sixtieth to seventy-fourth day preceding the primary; P.A. 07-132 changed "seventy-fourth day" to "seventy-eighth day", "four o'clock" to "twelve o'clock", and "thirty-sixth day" to "fortieth day", effective June 25, 2007.

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      Sec. 9-467. Issuance of petition. On or after twelve o'clock noon of the seventy-eighth day preceding the day of the primary, any person seeking the nomination of a party for President, whose name is not included in the list of candidates announced by the secretary pursuant to section 9-466, or any person advocating the nomination of such person, by such party, may obtain petition pages from the secretary in the manner provided by this section. Such pages shall be in a form prescribed by the secretary and shall conform, as nearly as may be, to the requirements for primary petition forms provided in section 9-410. Any person requesting the petition pages shall give to the secretary, in writing, his name and address, the name and address of the candidate for whom the petition is to be circulated and the party holding the primary, and shall also file, or cause to be filed, with said secretary a written statement, signed by such candidate, to the effect that he consents to the inclusion of his name on the primary ballot of such party. Upon completion of these requirements, the secretary shall give to the person so requesting such petition pages one petition page, suitable for duplication. If the person is requesting the form on behalf of an indigent candidate, the secretary shall give the person the number of original pages that such person requests or the number of original pages that the secretary deems to be sufficient. The secretary shall also fill in on each petition page the name and address of the candidate, the words "nomination for President of the United States" as the designation of the office sought, and the name of the party conducting the primary.

      (P.A. 77-535, S. 5; P.A. 79-481, S. 5; P.A. 83-475, S. 38, 43; P.A. 94-209, S. 2; P.A. 07-132, S. 3.)

      History: P.A. 79-481 added to the information to be furnished the secretary of the state, "the party holding the primary"; P.A. 83-475 amended section to reduce number of petition pages given by secretary from three times to twice the number necessary; P.A. 94-209 changed first day of issuing petitions from sixtieth to seventy-fourth day preceding the primary; P.A. 07-132 changed "seventy-fourth day" to "seventy-eighth day" and changed number of petition pages given to a person from a sufficient number of pages to one page, suitable for duplication, unless requested on behalf of an indigent candidate, effective June 25, 2007.

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      Sec. 9-468. Circulation, filing and verification of petition. Except as hereinafter provided, such petitions shall be circulated, filed with the registrars of voters, and verified by said registrars, as nearly as may be, in accordance with the provisions of sections 9-410 and 9-412. Each page of such a petition shall be filed with the registrar of voters of the party holding the primary in the town of voting residence of the signers thereof, not later than four o'clock p.m. of the fiftieth day preceding the day of the primary; and such registrar shall verify the signatures on each such page and forward it to the secretary not later than four o'clock p.m. of the forty-sixth day preceding the day of the primary. If, prior to such last day for filing such pages with the registrar, such a petition was issued under section 9-467, the office or office facilities of each registrar of such party in each town shall open not later than one o'clock p.m. and remain open until at least four o'clock p.m., and each such registrar or his deputy assistant registrar shall be present therein.

      (P.A. 77-535, S. 6; P.A. 79-481, S. 6; P.A. 83-475, S. 39, 43; P.A. 85-577, S. 19; P.A. 07-132, S. 4.)

      History: P.A. 79-481 rephrased provisions but made no substantive changes; P.A. 83-475 amended section to refer to Secs. 9-410 and 9-412 instead of Secs. 9-402 and 9-403; P.A. 85-577 amended section to provide open office hours at the registrar of voters, if prior to the last day for filing petition pages, a petition was issued under Sec. 9-467; P.A. 07-132 changed "forty-sixth day" to "fiftieth day" and "forty-second day" to "forty-sixth day", effective June 25, 2007.

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      Sec. 9-469. Tabulation of signatures. The secretary shall complete tabulation of the signatures on such petitions not later than the thirty-sixth day preceding the day of the primary. The secretary shall place on the ballot of each party at the primary the name of each candidate whose petition has been signed by a number of enrolled members of such party equal to at least one per cent of the total number of enrolled members of such party in the state, according to the most recent enrollment records on file in the office of the secretary. No candidate who has filed a statement of consent pursuant to the provisions of section 9-467 and whose name is placed on the ballot pursuant to the provisions of this section shall be permitted to withdraw his name from such ballot.

      (P.A. 77-535, S. 7; P.A. 79-481, S. 7.)

      History: P.A. 79-481 rephrased provisions but made no substantive changes.

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      Sec. 9-470. Order of candidate names on ballot. The secretary shall determine by lot, in a public ceremony held on the thirty-fifth day preceding the day of the primary, the order in which the names of the candidates will appear on the ballot of each party at such primary; provided that the category "uncommitted" shall appear last on such ballots. Notwithstanding any provision of the general statutes to the contrary, no candidate shall be designated on the ballot as the party-endorsed candidate. The names of such candidates shall appear, in the order so determined by the secretary, in the first vertical column of the voting machine. Such column shall be designated "Nomination for President of the United States"; provided if the number of candidates is such that there is an insufficient number of places in such column, the secretary shall determine whether the names of the candidates shall also extend, in the order so determined, to the second and succeeding columns as may be necessary, or shall appear on the first and succeeding horizontal rows as may be necessary. Such columns or rows shall be designated as hereinabove provided. Except as otherwise provided in this chapter, the form of the ballot shall be prescribed by the secretary and shall conform, as nearly as may be, to the provisions of section 9-437.

      (P.A. 77-535, S. 8; P.A. 79-481, S. 8.)

      History: P.A. 79-481 substituted "uncommitted" for the category "none of those listed", deleted provisions concerning delegate slates and further deleted provision concerning ballot label when primary for town committee is held on the same day.

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      Sec. 9-471. Notice of primary. Forthwith upon determination of the order of candidates on the ballot, the secretary shall send a notice of primary for each party to each town clerk. Such notice shall include the names of the candidates in the order so determined and their addresses. Such notice shall conform, as nearly as may be, to the provisions of section 9-433 concerning notice of primary for nomination to a state office. The town clerk shall, forthwith upon receipt of such notice, cause it to be published in the manner provided in said section.

      (P.A. 77-535, S. 9; P.A. 79-481, S. 9.)

      History: P.A. 79-481 rephrased provisions but made no substantive changes.

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      Sec. 9-472. Vacancy on ballot due to candidate death. If, after determination of the order of candidates on the ballot, a candidate dies, his name shall not appear on such ballot; provided that the position of each remaining candidate on the ballot shall not be altered by the deletion of such name. The secretary may authorize the use of blank stickers on the ballot by town clerks in order to comply with the provisions of this section.

      (P.A. 77-535, S. 10; P.A. 79-481, S. 10; P.A. 07-132, S. 5.)

      History: P.A. 79-481 rephrased provisions but made no substantive changes; P.A. 07-132 deleted provision re locking of voting machine candidate pointer over any blank space on ballot, effective June 25, 2007.

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      Sec. 9-473. Notification by party chairmen of delegates allotted. Not later than the fourteenth day before the day of the primary, the chairman of each party shall certify in writing to the secretary the number of delegates to which such party is entitled pursuant to its rules. If such rules provide that such delegates are to be chosen from districts, the chairman shall also certify the number of delegates allocated to each district and the number to be selected at large, if any. Such rules may (1) prescribe a formula for the allocation of delegates to candidates based upon the percentages of the total votes cast for such candidates at the primary, or (2) require all delegates shall be allocated to the candidate receiving the greatest number of votes notwithstanding such candidate's percentage of the total votes cast for all candidates. If such rules prescribe a formula for the allocation of delegates to candidates based upon the percentages of the total votes cast for such candidates at the primary, the chairman shall also certify such formula and all information necessary for the application of such formula to the results of the primary. The chairman shall furnish to the secretary, upon request, a written interpretation or explanation of any application of such formula.

      (P.A. 77-535, S. 11; P.A. 79-481, S. 11; P.A. 95-95, S. 2.)

      History: P.A. 79-481 provided for information submitted to include the number to be selected at large, if any, and also if the rules prescribe a formula for allocation of delegates based on the votes of the primary, the formula and necessary information pertaining to its application are to be submitted and further provided that on request chairman to furnish a written interpretation or explanation of the latter; P.A. 95-95 allowed rules to require allocation of delegates to candidate receiving greatest number of votes.

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      Secs. 9-474 and 9-475. Candidate caucuses. Selection of delegate slates. Sections 9-474 and 9-475 are repealed.

      (P.A. 77-535, S. 12, 13; P.A. 79-481, S. 18.)

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      Sec. 9-476. Conduct of primary. Except as otherwise provided in this chapter, the provisions of chapter 145 and chapter 153 concerning absentee voting at primaries, conduct of primaries and return and tabulation of the vote at such primaries shall apply as nearly as practicable and in the manner prescribed by the secretary, to a presidential preference primary. The primary officials of each party for each polling place shall be as specified in section 9-436, except that (1) the appointment of assistant registrars of voters and absentee ballot counters shall be permitted but not required, (2) the minimum number of official checkers shall be one, (3) the minimum number of voting machine tenders shall be one for each two voting machines in use, (4) if two parties are holding primaries and the registrars of voters of such parties so agree, such registrars may jointly appoint (A) one enrolled member of either party to serve as moderator of both primaries and (B) one enrolled member of either party to serve as head moderator of both primaries, (5) notwithstanding any reduction in the number of primary officials as permitted by this section, any duty required of primary officials by the general statutes may be performed by one or more primary officials, at the direction of the registrar of voters of the party of such officials and (6) the registrar of voters shall have the sole power to appoint such officials. In making such appointments the registrar shall attempt, to the extent practicable, to provide representation for each candidate at each polling place. The provisions of section 9-436a shall apply to each candidate whose name appears on the ballot, except that each such candidate, through his authorized or known representative, may submit to the registrar the name of one designee as candidate checker for each polling place, and the registrar shall appoint such designee as candidate checker for such candidate. Notwithstanding the provisions of section 9-438, the polls shall be open for voting at the primary between the hours of six o'clock a.m. and eight o'clock p.m. The moderator or head moderator of the primary in each town shall prepare duplicate lists of returns in the manner provided by section 9-440, but notwithstanding the provisions of said section, he shall hand deliver one of such lists to either the secretary or the state police by two o'clock p.m. of the day following the primary. Any moderator or head moderator, as the case may be, who fails to deliver such list to either the secretary or the state police by such time shall pay a late filing fee of fifty dollars.

      (P.A. 77-535, S. 14; P.A. 79-481, S. 12; P.A. 85-577, S. 20; P.A. 86-179, S. 50, 53; P.A. 92-1, S. 1, 8.)

      History: P.A. 79-481 provided for exceptions to Sec. 9-436 in application to presidential preference primary in that appointment of challengers is not required and that registrar of voters shall have sole power to appoint the primary officials and shall attempt to provide representation for each candidate at each polling place, provided for appointment of unofficial checker, as designation by each candidate and further provided that the moderator or head moderator deliver one of lists prepared pursuant to Sec. 9-440, by his own hand, to either the secretary or the state police by noon of the day following the primary; P.A. 85-577 changed delivery time to the secretary of the state or state police from noon to two o'clock p.m. and established late filing fee; P.A. 86-179 made technical changes; P.A. 92-1 inserted new Subdivs. (1) to (5) re number and duties of polling place officials and deleted former Subdiv. (1) re optional appointment of challengers, renumbering former Subdiv. (2) as (6) and substituted "candidate checker" for "unofficial checker".

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      Secs. 9-477 to 9-481. Tabulation of votes. Delegate affidavit. Convention certification. Vacancy in delegate slate prior to primary. Vacancy in delegate slate following primary. Sections 9-477 to 9-481, inclusive, are repealed.

      (P.A. 77-535, S. 15-19; P.A. 79-481, S. 18.)

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      Sec. 9-482. "Candidate" includes "uncommitted". Determination of total votes cast. As used in this section and in sections 9-483, 9-484 and 9-485, "candidate" includes the category "uncommitted". The secretary shall determine the number of votes cast for each candidate and the total number of votes cast for all candidates at each party's primary. If delegates are to be selected to represent districts, the secretary shall also make such determination for each such district.

      (P.A. 79-481, S. 13.)

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      Sec. 9-483. Allocation of delegates pursuant to party formula. If a party's chairman has certified a formula in accordance with the provisions of section 9-473, the secretary shall calculate the number of delegates allocated to each of such party's candidates, pursuant to such formula, except as provided in section 9-484.

      (P.A. 79-481, S. 14.)

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      Sec. 9-484. Allocation of delegates pursuant to state formula. (a) If a party's chairman did not certify (1) a formula pursuant to section 9-473, or (2) a requirement that all delegates shall be allocated to the candidate receiving the greatest number of votes notwithstanding such candidate's percentage of the total votes cast for all candidates, the secretary shall determine the number of delegates to be so allocated to each candidate of each such party in accordance with the provisions of this section.

      (b) Such determination shall be made separately for delegates to be selected at large and delegates to be selected from each district. Any percentage required to be determined, in accordance with the provisions of this section, shall be rounded off to the nearest one-tenth of one per cent. As used in this section, "minimum percentage" means the ratio, expressed as a percentage, that the number one bears to the total number of delegates to be selected, but in no event shall such percentage exceed twenty-five per cent.

      (c) The secretary shall calculate the minimum percentage, as defined in subsection (b) of this section, using the number of delegates to be selected at large and, if applicable, the number of delegates to be selected from each district respectively. Except as provided in this subsection, a candidate's percentage of the total votes cast for all candidates in the state or in a district must equal or exceed such minimum percentage in order for such candidate to be allocated any at large delegates or any delegates from such district, as the case may be. The secretary shall determine each candidate's percentage of the total votes cast for all candidates in the state and in each district. In the event two or more candidates have received a percentage of such total votes cast equal to or greater than the minimum percentage, the secretary shall calculate an adjusted percentage, which shall be each such candidate's percentage of the total votes cast for all such candidates, excluding the votes cast for all other candidates. The secretary shall then calculate the product of each such candidate's adjusted percentage and the total number of delegates to be selected, rounding off such product to the nearest integer. Such product shall be the number of delegates allocated to each such candidate except as hereinafter provided. (1) If the rounding off of such products to the nearest integers causes the sum of all delegates so allocated to be greater than the total number of delegates to be selected at large or from the district, then one delegate shall be subtracted from the number allocated to the candidate who received the greatest mathematical gain from such rounding off, and if necessary one delegate shall also be subtracted from the number allocated to the candidate who received the next greatest gain, and so on until the sum of all delegates allocated to candidates equals the total number of delegates to be so selected. (2) If the rounding off of such products to the nearest integers causes the sum of all delegates so allocated to be fewer than the total number of delegates to be selected at large or from the district, then one delegate shall be added to the number allocated to the candidate who suffered the greatest mathematical loss from such rounding off, and if necessary one delegate shall also be added to the number allocated to the candidate who suffered the next greatest such loss, and so on until the sum of all delegates allocated to candidates equals the total number of delegates to be so selected.

      (d) In the event one or no candidate has received a percentage of the total number of votes cast for all candidates equal to or greater than the minimum percentage, the secretary shall calculate an adjusted percentage for each of the candidates receiving the greatest and second greatest number of votes cast for all candidates. The adjusted percentage shall be such candidate's percentage of the total number of votes cast for both such candidates, excluding the total number of votes cast for all other candidates. The secretary shall determine the number of delegates allocated to each candidate by using the same procedure as prescribed in subsection (c) of this section.

      (P.A. 79-481, S. 15; P.A. 83-475, S. 40, 43; P.A. 95-95, S. 3.)

      History: P.A. 83-475 amended Subsec. (c) to establish new method for allocation of delegates among districts; P.A. 95-95 inserted Subdiv. indicators in Subsec. (a) and revised wording; (Revisor's note: In 1999 the words "did not certify (1)" were substituted for the words "did not (1) certify" in Subsec. (a) to conform text to P.A. 95-95).

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      Sec. 9-485. Certification of delegates. Release of delegates. (a) Forthwith upon completion of the procedures prescribed by section 9-483 or 9-484, as the case may be, the secretary shall certify to the chairman, each candidate and the national committee of the party, the number of such party's at large and district delegates allocated to each candidate in accordance with the provisions of said sections. Each party shall select a number of delegates, both at large and from each district, pursuant to its rules and in accordance with such certification, provided it shall select a number of delegates committed to support each candidate which is not less than the number so allocated to such candidate. If, prior to a party's selection of delegates, a candidate to whom one or more of such party's delegates are allocated files with the secretary a written statement, by him signed, to the effect that he has released all Connecticut delegates allocated to him, delegates committed to such candidate shall not be selected by such party. Forthwith upon the selection of delegates, the chairman shall certify to the secretary the name and address of each delegate, the district from which he was selected or that he was selected at large, and the name of the candidate to whom he is committed or that he is uncommitted, as the case may be. If, as a consequence of any such candidate's release of delegates, the number of delegates differs from the number so allocated in accordance with the secretary's certification, the chairman shall include in his certification a statement to such effect and an accounting of the differences.

      (b) The secretary shall forward a copy of such certification to the national committee of the party and to each candidate to whom at least one delegate is committed. If such certification indicates that the party has not complied with the provisions of this section in its selection of delegates, the secretary shall so inform the chairman, each such candidate and the national committee of the party. If any such candidate files with the secretary a written objection to any delegate committed to him according to the chairman's certification, the secretary shall inform the chairman and the national committee of the party of such objection. Any dispute over the selection of delegates by a party shall be resolved in such manner as its rules may prescribe.

      (c) If, subsequent to the primary, a candidate to whom one or more of such party's delegates are allocated either dies or files with the secretary a written statement, by him signed, to the effect that he has released all Connecticut delegates committed to him, the commitment of any such delegate to the candidate shall be deemed to have been released.

      (P.A. 79-481, S. 16.)

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      Sec. 9-486. Caucuses permitted. Nothing in this chapter shall be construed to prohibit the holding of caucuses for the selection of delegates prior to the day of the primary.

      (P.A. 79-481, S. 17; P.A. 83-475, S. 41, 43.)

      History: P.A. 83-475 deleted former Subsec. requiring persons wishing to become delegates to file a statement to that effect with the secretary of the state.

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      Secs. 9-487 to 9-599. Reserved for future use.

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