The New York primary election fiasco appears like it is not going to abate anytime soon.
As reported earlier by the Inquisitr, more than three million Independent voters — amounting to 27 percent of the electorate — were not allowed to cast their ballots in the New York primary held on April 19. The state’s closed primary system requires Independent voters to change their party affiliations six months before the ballot is cast, a rule disenfranchising many voters from taking part in the primary.
Election Justice USA, a group representing voters purged from the lists, filed a lawsuit in the days leading up to the primary that sought to open the infamously restrictive closed primary. Although the lawsuit was put off by a judge to be heard at a later date, disenfranchised Democratic voters were asked to cast their votes in provisional ballots.
According to SI Live, as many as 121,056 provisional and affidavit ballots were cast in New York, out of which nearly 40,000 provisional votes were cast in Brooklyn alone, which are set to be counted. If it happens, it could dent Hillary Clinton’s delegate lead over Bernie Sanders in the state.
In what could be another turnaround in the Democratic race, a Manhattan attorney, Mark Moody, has filed an emergency motion and class action lawsuit in the New York state Supreme Court asking for the certification of New York primary election results to be stopped, reports the New York Daily News.
A judge scheduled the hearing for Friday noon.
Noting that even the children of a presidential candidate, Donald Trump, were not allowed to cast their ballots in the New York primary, Mark Moody’s lawsuit maintained that there is something deeply unconstitutional in the state’s closed primary system.
“Notwithstanding the armies of lawyers at Donald Trump’s disposal by virtue of his billionairism, his own children were precluded from voting for their father.
“The Trump children and I, together with millions of other New Yorkers, were dis(en)franchised.”
According to the lawsuit, Moody did not realize that his name had been purged from the voting list until the last minute.
Meanwhile, Election Justice’s attorneys have been working pro bono on their lawsuit. According to Heavy.com, they intend to file their own emergency order on Tuesday, seeking an injunction to stop certification of the New York primary results.
A part of Election Justice USA’s New York primary emergency order lawsuit reads as follows.
“Plaintiffs are in imminent harm of losing their right to vote. They have beseeched the various Boards of Elections without result. Nothing can save their right to vote save an order from this Court.”
While it is not yet officially known, Jordan Chariton of The Young Turks believes that the certification of the New York primary’s votes could be done on May 5. But if either of these lawsuits, with Mark Moody’s lawsuit to be heard on Friday, is approved by a judge, it could have significant ramifications on the Democratic race.
Depending on the decision, either the provisional votes may be counted, or in an overarching decision, a judge could even deem the New York primary unconstitutional, meaning an open primary will have to be rescheduled. Bernie Sanders’ supporters will hope that’s the case because it could significantly bolster his delegate tally in the state.
But even more importantly, it will seriously undermine the credibility of the closed primary system, which has come under increasing scrutiny during this nominating season.
[Photo by Stephanie Keith/Getty Images]