No-excuse absentee voting and same-day registration of voters in New York are among the measures being pushed by a coalition of groups seeking changes to how New Yorkers cast ballots in elections.
Some of the reforms, like ending the reasons for why a voter would qualify for an absentee ballot, would carry over from the changes made during the COVID-19 pandemic to limit the number of people at the polls.
At the same time, the groups under the Let NY Vote coalition, want to see an automatic restoration of voting rights for former inmates after incarceration.
The coalition is also calling for reforms at the board of elections, as well as a state-level version of the John Lewis Voting Rights Act, a federal measure that, among other provisions, is meant to bar states from curbing access to the voting booth.
“It’s time for New York to place voters first, expand access to the ballot, ensure accountability and transparency in election administration, and strengthen our democracy,” said Jan Combopiano, the senior policy director and executive committee member of the Brooklyn Voters Alliance. “We look forward to these bills passing this year to continue modernizing our elections so all voters have their voices heard.”
Gov. Andrew Cuomo in January backed an expansion of absentee voting to end requirements for requesting a ballot, as well as expanded hours for early voting locations in the state.