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To the Editor:

In a Dec. 31, 2011 letter to the editor of the Albany Times-Union, New York State LWV President Betsey Swan stated:
“The League of Women Voters of New York State is outraged at the state Legislature's inability to agree on a primary election date that is compliant with federal law. The September date for New York's nonpresidential primary does not satisfy the 2009 federal MOVE Act, which requires states to get ballots to overseas military voters 45 days before a federal election…. For 2010, the state received a one-time waiver that allowed it to continue holding congressional and state legislative primaries in September. There will not be a waiver for 2012. Now, the state faces the daunting prospect of holding three primaries — presidential, congressional and state legislative — next year unless the Legislature acts soon."
We, members of the League of Women Voters of Wayne County, agree with the State League’s position which favors a primary in June. Primaries were held in June before 1974. We believe the June Primary legislation SHOULD BE enacted. Some people have suggested moving the primary to August. Moving the primary to August is a particularly bad idea. Too few New Yorkers turn out to vote now; imagine scheduling a primary during a month when many are away from home. Not everyone preparing for vacation will have the foresight to go through the multiple steps necessary to vote absentee in New York. Currently New Yorkers will be asked to vote in three primaries: an April presidential vote, an August congressional vote and a September state and local office vote.

We urge all voters to contact their state senator and assemblyperson to ask that they support immediately passage of a June primary date (for congressional, state and local offices) to provide more New Yorkers the opportunity to vote and avoid the extraordinary expense of three primaries.


Ellie Drake, Co-Chair
Wayne County League of Women Voters

Sandy Keller, Co-Chair
Wayne County League of Women Voters


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