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NY SHOULD SCHEDULE PRESIDENTIAL PRIMARY BEFORE CANDIDATES DROP OUT
Release Date: February 03, 2016

NYS SHOULD SCHEDULE PRESIDENTIAL PRIMARY EARLY IN THE YEAR--BEFORE MOST CANDIDATES DROP OUT...

CURRENT PLAN IS FOR NY PRESIDENTIAL PRIMARY TO BE HELD ON APRIL 19TH, REDUCING INFLUENCE OF NEW YORK RESIDENTS IN PRESIDENTIAL SELECTION PROCESS

AND...NYS IS WASTING MILLIONS OF DOLLARS BY MAKING PEOPLE VOTE AT LEAST 4 TIMES THIS YEAR

SEPARATE DATES FOR PRESIDENTIAL, CONGRESSIONAL, STATE LEGISLATIVE PRIMARIES

New York State is wasting millions of dollars and discouraging voter participation. The Presidential primary election in NYS is being held on April 19th --after most candidates have dropped out of the race!

The Republican controlled State Senate wants voters to go to the polls at least 4 times this year-- April 19th (Presidential primary).  June 28th (Congressional primary). September 13 primaries for state and local offices. November 8th (election day).  May/June: School Board elections. December: Fire district elections.

 

Every time there is a contested primary local governments have to rent and staff polling locations and hire election inspectors. It's very expensive. NYS would save $25 million if they consolidated election dates. Our Assemblyman, Tom Abinanti and his colleagues in the State Assembly, voted to consolidate non presidential federal/state primary elections. And-- State Senator Andrea Stewart Cousins sent out a release supporting the Assembly initiative. Personally, I think that there should be one primary election date for every office: President, Congress & State Legislature.  An article about the initiative to consolidate election dates from a Syracuse publication  is posted below.

 

In tomorrow's NY Times (see link below) I urge the State Legislature to move up NY's primary for President. By April 19th most of the Presidential contenders will have dropped out of the race.  Presidential contenders don't spend much time in NY because we can't influence the nominating process. The local economy does not benefit from Presidential campaigning and we don't have much of an opportunity to highlight, during the Presidential primary campaigns, local concerns. Is it fair for New Hampshire voters to have more of a say in selecting Presidential nominees than New York voters? Why should NY have almost no influence in the nominating process because of the calendar?

Paul Feiner
 
 
By Mike McAndrew | mmcandrew@syracuse.com  
 

ALBANY, N.Y. -- New York state could save $25 million in 2016 and make life easier for voters if it held federal and state primary elections on one date, instead of two.

But it probably won't.

The Democratic-controlled state Assembly voted Tuesday to hold all non-presidential federal and state primary elections on the fourth Tuesday in June before general elections.

But the Republican-controlled state Senate has balked at similar bills in past years, preferring that state primary elections be held later in the year.

That means this year that voters may be asked to go to the polls at least four times: on April 19 for the presidential primary election, on June 28 for congressional primaries, on Sept. 13 for primaries for state and local offices, and then on Nov. 8 for the general elections.

Some voters might also have village and school board elections this year, as well.

If the non-presidential federal primary election and the state primaries were both held June 28, New York could save $25 million, according to the Assembly bill.

Onondaga County would save an estimated $150,000 if the two primaries were held the same day, said Dustin Czarny, the county's Democratic elections commissioner.

The Assembly voted Tuesday on a Assemblyman Michael Cusick's bill to consolidate the primary election dates.

The bill now goes to the Senate, where there are no Republican senators listed as sponsors of the legislation.

The Senate has objected in the past to holding primary elections for state offices in June because state legislators are traditionally busy in Albany until mid-June. Lawmakers fear if they face a primary election challenge they would not have time to campaign if the Legislature is in session in Albany.

The New York State Elections Commissioners Association in January urged the Legislature to reach agreement as soon as possible on a unified federal and state primary election date.

"We haven't seen any movement there. But we're hopeful," Czarny said.

He said in addition to the extra costs, having multiple elections is a hardship for voters, which may reduce participation.

"There is a worry about voter fatigue when you're having multiple elections," Czarny said. "Some voters will go to the polls six or eight times this year."

Another bill pending in the state Legislature would require New York state to reimburse counties and New York City for the estimated $50 million cost of administering separate federal and state primary elections.

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