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Mayor Bloomberg, Other New York Political Leaders, Ask Legislature for Certain Voting Reforms

Published on December 7, 2010, by in General.

On December 6, New York city Mayor Michael Bloomberg, along with several civic organizations and state legislators and other political leaders, held a press conference to ask the New York legislature to improve some election laws.  See this press release from the Mayor’s office.  The last page lists the specific proposals.

Probably the most significant change advocated is to relax the law that says no one may change political parties, and make that change effective, for almost a year before a primary.  New York’s law on this point is extreme.  The press release says that 20 of the 25 states that have registration by party permit voters to switch parties within 30 days of a primary (actually there are 29 states that have registration by party).

Although the group calls for simplified ballot design, the group doesn’t apparently intend to ask the legislature to revise the clumsy ballot format that forces some parties to share a column, or a row, with another party.  The press release just says that ballot instructions should be readily visible and in plain language.

5 Responses

  1. Before these changes could work, the NY State Election Laws needs to be revised to reflect the new optical scanning voting systems. It looks like all they did was change the title of the laws to 2010 but internally it still reflects a mixture of the old lever machines and the new optical scanners. No wonder when they programmed the new scanners they did not know how to handle reqirements that were for the old lever machines.

  2. Demo Rep

    Can P.R. and App.V. get into the Bloomberg brain ???

    NO primaries are needed.

    Office boxes for all candidates in scanner systems.

    The Sun will continue to rise even in N.Y. City and State.

  3. natural born citizen party

    SCOTUS (later this week) will have lock-box cert petition (at least a cert petition filing extension if not a stay application ) on its plate (again) regarding non-affiliated changing to IPNY

    see:

    ROSARIO V. ROCKEFELLER, 410 U. S. 752 (1973)
    Case Preview

    Full Text of Case

    U.S. Supreme Court
    Rosario v. Rockefeller, 410 U.S. 752 (1973)
    Rosario v. Rockefeller

    No. 71-1371

    Argued December 13, 1972

    Decided March 21, 1973

    410 U.S. 752

    Syllabus

    Petitioners challenge the constitutionality of New York Election Law § 186, which requires a voter to enroll in the party of his choice at least 30 days before the general election in order to vote in the next party primary. Though eligible to enroll before the previous general election, petitioners failed to do so, and were therefore ineligible to vote in the 1972 primary. The Court of Appeals, reversing the District Court, upheld the New York scheme, which it found to be a permissible deterrent against the practice of primary election “raiding” by opposing party members.

  4. After reading the press release, it’s difficult to understand why so much energy was expended for so little. These proposals confirm the truth of the criticism “tinkering around the edges of reform”. What a pity.
    Will none of the minor parties cobble together a list of reforms we’d like to see and hold a joint press conference to push them forward, in advance of the new session of the legislature?

  5. Demo Rep

    #4 Where is that Model Election Law — to be updated often to deal with morons at all times and places — election bureaucrats and even some voters ???

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