NEW YORK – New York State’s Board of Elections voted Monday to cancel the Democratic presidential primary originally scheduled for June 23 amid the Coronavirus pandemic.
Officials say New York will still hold its congressional and state-level primaries on June 23.
New York Democratic Party chair Jay Jacobs said that the cancellation of the state’s presidential primary would mean a lower expected turnout and a reduced need for polling places.
“It just makes so much sense given the extraordinary nature of the challenge,” Jacobs said last week.
Local election officials and voting groups have called on the state to use federal funds to purchase cleaning supplies and protective gear, and boost staff ahead of 2020 elections.
Both the state’s Democratic Party and Gov. Andrew Cuomo have said they didn’t ask election commissioners to make the change, which is allowed thanks to a little-known provision in the recently passed state budget that allows the New York board of elections to remove names of any candidates who have suspended or terminated their campaign from the ballot.
The decision to cancel a Democratic primary is left up to Democratic state election commissioners.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.