New York voting | WAMC

New York voting

New York State Senator David Carlucci
WAMC/Allison Dunne

After record-setting participation in an election carried out during a global pandemic, a Hudson Valley state senator says he will introduce legislation to require absentee ballots in New York be counted as they come in. 

Voters line up in the snow outside the Bought Community Fire District building in Cohoes in Albany County on Oct. 30, 2020.
Jim Levulis / WAMC

Voters in New York who have not cast their ballots early, in-person or by mail, go to the polls Tuesday. While Democrat Joe Biden is heavily favored to win the state over President Donald Trump, there is plenty of action in congressional and state races for voters to weigh in on. 

Poll workers wearing masks count ballots
Pat Bradley / WAMC

New York will immediately allow all voters in the state to request a mail-in ballot for the November elections. Governor Andrew Cuomo signed bills into law Thursday that, among other things, allow all eligible voters to cite the COVID-19 pandemic as a reason to vote absentee.

Poll workers wearing masks count ballots
Pat Bradley / WAMC

The June 23 primary was the first in New York to allow all voters the option of casting their ballots by mail. Under an executive order by Governor Andrew Cuomo, registered voters could cite the COVID-19 pandemic as a reason for filling out an absentee ballot. The New York State legislature held a hearing Tuesday on the June primary elections, to find out what went right and what went wrong.

A white sign outside that says early voting with blue stars around it.
Paul Tuthill / WAMC

Many eligible voters for the June 23 primary in New York are receiving applications for absentee ballots in the mail, as the state tries to make it easier for people to avoid physically going to the polls during the COVID-19 pandemic. But voting rights advocates say more needs to be done.

New York state Capitol
Jim Levulis / WAMC

Democrats who lead the New York state Senate approved several measures on Thursday to make it easier to vote. But a newly energized Republican minority wanted to talk about other topics, such as worries about undocumented immigrants voting and whether to repeal recently enacted bail reforms.

New York State Capitol
Karen DeWitt

A commission to examine a public campaign finance system for state wide elections in New York may also look at whether to continue the state’s practice of what’s known as fusion voting. It allows more than one political party to support the same candidate on the ballot, a practice that resulted in the Democratic and Republican candidates for governor appearing on a total of six different ballot lines in 2018. But the proposed change has members on the left and the right of the mainstream political parties concerned.  


Democrats who will run the state Senate in January say a top priority will be to expand access to voting in New York. Advocates say there are several steps they can take.

NYS Senate Democratic Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins
Karen DeWitt

The newly reunited New York state Senate Democrats held their first press conference, where they focused on what they said was their number one priority, a package of bills making it easier to vote.

NY AG Recommends Fix To Restrictive Voting Laws

Dec 6, 2016
New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman
Karen DeWitt

New York's Attorney General has released a package of bills aimed at improving what he says is the state’s “arcane” and “ridiculous” voting laws that bar many potential voters from the ballot box.