ALBANY — Every New Yorker will receive a postage-paid absentee ballot application for the June 23 primary election, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo declared in an executive order Friday, as he continued his plea for the federal government to fund states in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The governor’s executive order will mandate the state Board of Elections mail every New Yorker a postage-paid application for an absentee ballot for the June 23 primary election.
“It makes no sense to me to tell people you have to put your life at risk, violate social distancing, to come out to vote,” Cuomo said during a briefing Friday in the state Capitol. “If you want to vote, we should send you a ballot so you can vote so you don’t have to come out and get in line.”
For New Yorkers who do not want to vote by absentee ballots, polls will be open for people to vote in person June 23, the governor said. The executive order will alter the state’s guidelines to include avoiding the risk of contracting COVID-19 as an accepted reason to vote via absentee ballot, said Secretary to the Governor Melissa DeRosa.
“We didn’t think that was within our constitutional right to override the constitution and create a mail-in voting system that doesn’t exist,” she explained Friday. “Everyone will get an application with postage. They fill it out and send it back in.”