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NY Voting Rights Consortium Calls For Special Elections

Advocates who want special elections to be held for 12 vacant seats in the New York state Legislature say minority communities are being deprived of proper representation.

The New York Voting Rights Consortium is calling on Gov. Andrew Cuomo to order special elections for the vacant seats in the State Assembly and State Senate by April 24.

Cuomo has noted the need to balance the communities' rights to representation with the elections' costs.

The consortium says the vacancies are depriving about 1.8 million New Yorkers of full representation. The say about 800,000 of those New Yorkers are people of color.

Most of the vacancies occurred because lawmakers were elected to another office or took another job. Others were vacated after scandals or felony convictions.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.