Cuomo Moves the Goalposts, Increases Ballot Access Requirements for Third Parties

Cuomo Moves the Goalposts, Increases Ballot Access Requirements for Third Parties

Note: In a blatant attempt to nullify the ballot access achievement of the LPNY and other third parties in the state, Governor Cuomo (through his flunky Jay Jacobs) has had a Campaign Finance Reform Committee approve rule changes that will make it over 300% harder for a third party to obtain or retain “permanent ballot status” in New York. The changes raise the required statewide vote threshold from from 50,000 to 130,000 votes, and would require parties to qualify every two years. The rules become law if the Legislature does not object by Christmas, as summarized by the NY Daily News:

the Public Finance Commission released a report laying out an unprecedented overhaul of the state’s campaign and election laws and creating a $100 million taxpayer-backed matching funds program for state races. 

Among the changes is a measure that raises the vote threshold third parties need to maintain a spot on the ballot.

The new rule requires political parties to garner a minimum of 130,000 votes every two years to remain on the ballot — a significant jump from the current threshold of 50,000 every four years.

The move, championed by Democratic party chairman Jay Jacobs, Cuomo’s appointee to the panel, will essentially spell the end for minor parties such as the Green and Libertarian parties. Last year, only the state Conservative Party, which garnered 253,624 votes, would have met the new threshold.

Both Cuomo and Jacobs defended the requirement, suggesting it is needed to keeps costs down and to ensure only credible candidates receive public matching funds.

“Achieving a higher threshold will require minor parties seeking “permanent party status” to actually campaign and ask voters to vote for their party’s nominee on their minor party line,” Jacobs wrote in the final report released Sunday…

More here.   And use this form on the LP Queens site to complain to the state Legislature while there’s still time. Protect our ballot access!

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