A campaign by Democratic elected officials and advocates to approve changes to the state's constitution, countered by a push against the measures by Republicans, went into the final weekend as Election Day approaches in New York.
Voters are considering five proposed changes to the state's constitution, measures that would make alterations to the state's redistricting process, guarantee a right to a clean environment, end the 10-day pre-registration requirement for registering to vote, provide for no-excuse absentee balloting, and make administration changes for a court in New York City.
But it's proposals 1, 3 and 4 on the ballot that have generated the most attention and controversy in what is expected to be a low-turnout year with no candidates running statewide.
Redistricting in New York, already underway, could be a major role in who controls the House of Representatives.
The redistricting amendment, along with the voter law changes, have the potential to alter the electoral playing field in New York, Republicans argue, by giving more power to the Democratic majorities to draw boundaries should an independent commission fail to reach an agreement.
State Republican Chairman Nick Langworthy has spent the last several weeks barnstorming the state to votes to reject those amendments.
"These dangerous proposals will bring ballot harvesting to New York, implement same-day registration with no voter ID and give Democrats power to gerrymander their districts," Langworthy wrote in a message to supporters this weekend. "In short, they would be a disaster for election integrity and that’s why we’re working so hard to urge all New Yorkers who care about honest elections to vote NO."
Democrats, however, point to the amendment enshrining changes such as ending the use of prisons to help gerrymander districts as well as capping the number of state Senate seats at 63 - tactics used in the past by Republicans to help maintain power.
The voting law changes, meanwhile, are seen by progressive advocates in New York as key to expanding access to the ballot as other states move in the opposite direction.
On Sunday, elected officials that included Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, Rep. Jerry Nadler, Senator Brad Hoylman, and Assemblymember Linda Rosenthal rallied with advocates for the amendments' final approval.
"While right-wing lawmakers across the country are spreading twisted lies in order to pass anti-voter laws and push people of color and immigrants out of democracy, New Yorkers have the chance to show the rest of the country that we stand for a democracy where nobody is shut out," Nadler said. "I urge everyone to vote yes on proposals 1, 3, and 4 to give New Yorkers the strong democracy that every American deserves."