BRATTLEBORO—On a hot July morning, Holton Home residents give their names to Activities Director Ellenka Wasung-Lott.
No, they say, we’re not registered to vote.
Wasung-Lott and volunteers help the residents register on the spot.
She said that Holton Home, a 35-room home for the elderly on Western Avenue, assists residents who are looking to vote in local elections, the primaries, and the general election.
Members of the staff put together candidate synopses, help residents who are interested in early voting, and provide transportation to the polls during elections.
Resident Melvina Springer said she will consider registering to vote this year.
Springer said she hasn’t gone to the polls since she voted for John F. Kennedy for president in 1960. Since then, she said, she’s been married twice, and neither husband voted.
“I might listen to Obama,” Springer said. “I don’t think he’s been given half a chance.”
“He was the only one getting the boys back home,” she adds.
Vermont’s early voting period, once called absentee voting, opened on July 16 for the Aug. 28 primary. Registered voters can contact their local town clerk to have a ballot mailed to them, or vote in person at the town clerk’s office.
The primary is open to all Vermont voters regardless of party affiliation.
Candidate Attorney General William Sorrell spoke to Holton Home residents on July 17, as part of a recent 14-county tour to highlight early voting and meet with supporters.
The 15-year incumbent spoke about his wins for the state, starting with settling a case with the tobacco industry for over $300 million, through to a win that Vermont shared with New York, Connecticut, and New Jersey against the Nuclear Regulatory Commission concerning onsite storage of nuclear waste.
Sorrell also cautioned the seniors about mail and wire scams aimed at the elderly, where people posing as relatives ask for money.
Sorrell also spoke about voting in the primary. He said if he doesn’t win against challenger Chittenden County State’s Attorney T. J. Donovan in August, his name won’t appear on the ballot in November.
“Your vote counts as much as mine, the governor’s, or anyone’s,” said Sorrell. “That’s the beauty of our system.”
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