#BernieSanders News Roundup, #NYPrimary Edition 4/18-20 | Blog#42

This is the NY Primary edition of my Bernie Sanders news roundup

New York’s Primary Isn’t Going Smoothly So Far

NEW YORK, NEW YORK — Less than halfway though primary election day in New York, a main voter protection hotline has already received “hundreds” of phone calls from people with complaints, issues, and questions about their voter registrations and polling sites.

New Yorkers have been turned away due to problems with their voter registrations; polling sites have been closed; and equipment has been malfunctioning at sites across New York, according to Kristen Clarke, president and executive director of the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law. Clarke’s organization runs the Election Protection hotline, which seeks to help voters work through challenges they experience at the polls.

“The traffic to our polling hotlines has been pretty significant,” Clarke told ThinkProgress on Tuesday afternoon. “We’re seeing a high volume of calls, which suggests this is not an election that is problem-free.”

Read the rest of this article on ThinkProgress

Sanders wins majority of NY counties despite Clinton victory

Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton had a decisive victory in Tuesday’s New York presidential primary, but rival Bernie Sanders won a majority of the counties in the state.

The Vermont senator won most of the counties, including Albany County, where the capital is located.

Read the rest of this article on TheHill.com

Axelrod to Clinton: Stop insinuating young Sanders supporters are ‘dupes’

By Jesse ByrnesDavid Axelrod on Wednesday suggested that Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton stop using a line about rival Bernie Sanders feeding young supporters “a list of misrepresentations.””Line @HillaryClinton should drop: ‘…I feel sorry for the young people who are fed this list of misrepresentations.’ It’s patronizing,” tweeted Axelrod, the former senior adviser to President Obama who served as his strategist on both White House campaigns.

“I would stay away from the insinuation that these young people who are inspired by Bernie Sanders are dupes and that somehow they are being fed misinformation and that’s why they are enthusiastic about Bernie Sanders,” Axelrod later said during an appearance on CNN’s “New Day.”

Read the rest of this article on TheHill.com

Sanders expresses ‘concern’ over NY voting laws after primary defeat

Democratic presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders criticized New York’s voting laws Tuesday night, shortly after results came in showing that he lost the state’s primary to front-runner Hillary Clinton.

“I remain also concerned that in a state as large as New York, almost 30 percent of the eligible voters, some 3 million New Yorkers, were unable to vote today because they had registered as independents, not Democrats or Republicans, and that makes no sense,” he added.

Read the rest of this article on TheHill.com

New York Had the Second Lowest Voter Turnout So Far This Election Season

April 20, 2016

When you are only beating Louisiana, something is very wrong.

“I voted without problems yesterday, but many other New Yorkers weren’t as lucky.

The Kings County Board of Elections purged 126,000 registered Democrats from the voting rolls in Brooklyn, prompting an outcry from Mayor Bill de Blasio and an audit from Comptroller Scott Stringer. “It has been reported to us from voters and voting rights monitors that the voting lists in Brooklyn contain numerous errors, including the purging of entire buildings and blocks of voters from the voting lists,” de Blasio said. “The perception that numerous voters may have been disenfranchised undermines the integrity of the entire electoral process and must be fixed.”

Polling places didn’t open on time, voting machines malfunctioned, and voters showed up to find their names weren’t on the rolls. Some voters had their party affiliations mysteriously switched from Democratic or Republican to Independent or Non-affiliated and couldn’t vote in the closed primaries. And three million New Yorkers, 27 percent of the electorate, didn’t get to vote because they weren’t registered with the Democratic or Republican parties, and the deadline to change party affiliation was an absurd 193 days before the April 19 primary, as I reported on Monday.

As a result, only 19.7 percent of eligible New Yorkers cast a ballot, the second lowest voter turnout in the primaries after Louisiana, according to elections expert Michael McDonald. There were over 900 calls from frustrated voters to the Election Protection Coalition, more than in any other primary state.”

Read the rest of this article on TheNation.com

When you are only beating Louisiana, something is very wrong.

Editorial: California’s presidential primaries matter this year — and too many voters may be left out

This year, it seems, California’s presidential primaries may finally matter. But many voters could lose their opportunity to participate if they don’t act soon. That’s because the June 7 primaries are not open races, in which voters may simply show up and choose among all the possible candidates. Rather, these are party nominating contests, and it is the parties themselves that set the rules about who can participate. Only registered Republicans may cast ballots for Donald Trump, Ted Cruz or John Kasich. The Democratic Party restricts its primary between Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders to registered Democrats and to voters listed as “no party preference.”

With so much interest in this year’s primary, elections officials are concerned that many Californians won’t be able to participate in the presidential primary of their choice because they don’t know the rules, don’t know their party status or have registered for the wrong party. A Times survey recently found, for instance, that three out of four people who had signed up as American Independents didn’t realize they had registered for a real, right-wing political party. Many thought they were simply signing up as lower-case “i” independents (the unaffiliated voters California classifies as “no party preference” voters or, as they were formerly called, “decline to state” voters).

Intentional or not, American Independents will be given an AIP ballot on June 7 with a list of candidates most have never heard of, and they’ll be barred from voting in the Democratic or Republican presidential primaries. And that at a time when California leaders have adopted laws designed to boost turnout and participation. Secretary of State Alex Padilla ought to revisit the voter registration form to eliminate that confusing element and any others that people encounter when they sign up to vote.

Read the rest of this editorial at LATimes.com

Failure, Fraud and More In New York’s Punk Rock Voting Disaster

Voters across New York are telling horror stories about their inability to cast a ballot because of everything from broken voting machines to clerical errors over shared middle names.

Alba Guerrero was dumbfounded. She’d arrived at her polling place in Ozone Park, Queens only to be told that she had been registered as a Republican since 2004.

That was news to her. She remembers registering to vote for the first time as a Democrat so she could vote for Barack Obama in the general election in 2008. When she recently moved from Manhattan to Ozone Park, in Queens, she re-registered at the DMV, she says, and even checked online on March 9th to be sure she was registered at her new address.

But when she showed up to vote for Bernie Sanders at PS63 on Tuesday, she says she was told she couldn’t. New York is a closed primary, where only registered Democrats can vote in the Democratic Primary—and voters had to be registered by last October. She was told—very politely, she wants to make clear—by poll workers to take it up with a judge. She was given a court order in nearby Forest Hills.

Read the rest of this article on TheDailyBeast

New York City watchdog decries ‘irregularities’ in primary voting

A New York City official on Tuesday ordered an audit of the city’s election authorities, citing “deep concern over widespread reports of poll site problems and irregularities” as voters cast their ballots in the state’s primary election.

New York Republicans and Democrats are holding presidential nominating contests for the Nov. 8 election. Delegate-rich New York, the fourth most populous U.S. state, is a big prize for the candidates.

“There is nothing more sacred in our nation than the right to vote, yet election after election, reports come in of people who were inexplicably purged from the polls, told to vote at the wrong location or unable to get into their polling site,” city Comptroller Scott Stringer said.

Stringer said his office had received reports of polling stations that failed to open on time and were unable to tell voters when they would be operational. A voter in the borough of Queens reported a broken machine and staff instructing voters to place their ballots in a “slot” for processing at a later time.

Read the rest of this article at Reuters.com

Sanders campaign, New York officials cry foul after New York voters report issues

New York City (CNN)Bernie Sanders’ campaign on Tuesday called reports of voting irregularities in New York state “a disgrace” as local officials rushed to condemn the city Board of Elections for stripping more than 125,000 Democratic voters from the rolls.

“It is absurd that in Brooklyn, New York — where I was born, actually — tens of thousands of people as I understand it, have been purged from the voting rolls,” Sanders said during an evening campaign rally at Penn State University.

In an email to CNN, Sanders spokesman Karthik Ganapathy called the state’s handling of the primary a “shameful demonstration.”

“From long lines and dramatic understaffing to longtime voters being forced to cast affidavit ballots and thousands of registered New Yorkers being dropped from the rolls, what’s happening today is a disgrace,” he said.

Election Justice USA, a voter rights organization, told CNN it will go to Federal District Court in Brooklyn on Wednesday morning as part of an effort to have provisional ballots from voters disenfranchised by the Board of Elections counted before the primary results are certified.

Read the rest of this article on CNN.com

New York hit with widespread complaints about voting irregularities

New York was beset by voting irregularities, with widespread reports of people being inexplicably stripped from voter rolls and other snafus, prompting the New York City comptroller to announce an audit to identify failings in Tuesday’s primary.

Bernie Sanders’ campaign cried foul as voting was still going on, saying they were alarmed by complaints from multiple polling locations.

“We are deeply disturbed by what we’re hearing from polling places across the state,” the Sanders campaign statement said. “From long lines and dramatic understaffing to longtime voters being forced to cast affidavit ballots and thousands of registered New Yorkers being dropped from the rolls, what’s happening today is a disgrace. We need to be making it easier for people to vote, not inventing arbitrary obstacles — and today’s shameful demonstration must underline the urgent importance of fixing voting laws across the country.”

The New York state attorney general’s office said Tuesday that it was overwhelmed by voter complaints, receiving nearly five times as many voter grievances during this year’s primary than during the 2012 general election.

Read the rest of this article on Politico.com

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