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Mayor de Blasio's Quest to Fix NY Voting Laws: 'We Are Just Backwards'

The Village Voice

Anyone who stood in line at a polling place or missed the registration deadline for this year’s general election will tell you: voting in New York is not easy. Even if you make it inside the voting booth, it’s easy to be discouraged when so many races are either lopsided or uncontested. In recent months, Mayor Bill de Blasio has become increasingly vocal about the need to reform the system, but he faces long odds as he takes the fight to Albany next year.[...]

Advocates in attendance pushed for more, including automatic voter registration, no-excuse absentee voting, and relaxing the state’s onerous requirement that voters affiliate in a party more than six months before voting in its primary.

“Even Donald Trump’s children were not able to vote in their primary for their father because they didn’t know about the six-month rule,” said Jonathan Brater of the Brennan Center for Justice. “If that information isn’t penetrating Trump Tower, it isn’t penetrating public housing.”

“When you have this decrease in turnout, you end up with a lot less people of color voting,” said Demos policy analyst Sean McElwee. “That translates into policies that harm the people who are not voting.”