Judge Strikes Down Controversial Clause in NY’s New Election Laws
Judge Strikes Down Controversial Clause in NY’s New Election Laws

By Allen Zhong

New York state court judge on Friday struck down one controversial sentence in New York’s new election laws.

New York Supreme Court Justice Dianne Freestone said the sentence deprived the rights of courts to rule on disputed ballots.

The last sentence in Article 9-209(8)e of the 2022 Election Law—which has been amended recently by the Democrat-led state legislature—says: “In no event may a court order a ballot that has been counted to be uncounted.”

Freestone said the clause violated the Constitution and abandoned a long-time bipartisan tradition.

“[It] abrogates both the right of an individual to seek judicial intervention of a contested ‘qualified’ ballot before it is opened and counted, and the right of the Court to judicially review same prior to canvassing,” she wrote.

The justice also said that the amendment de facto suspended a long-standing practice: that a questioned ballot should be preserved for three days while awaiting judicial review.

The Epoch Times has reached out to the New York State Board of Elections for comment.

Jennifer Wilson, the spokeswoman of the state election authority, told the State of Politics that their office is still reviewing the ruling to share its view on the impact to the upcoming election.

Nick Langworthy, chairman of the New York Republican Party, applauded the ruling.

“Today is another good day for free and fair elections in New York,” he said in a statement. “The Constitution has been on our side and we will continue to fight to uphold the will of the voters and to ensure honest elections in New York.”

The ruling is likely to be challenged in a higher court.

Timing of Ballot Contesting Changed

In New York election law, preservation and review of ballots are allowed in at least several circumstances, including election result audits and ballot contests.

The law clearly states that disputed ballots should be preserved for judicial review.

“The supreme court, by a justice within the judicial district, or the county court, by a county judge within his county, may direct the examination by any candidate or his agent of any ballot or voting machine upon which his name appeared, and the preservation of any ballots in view of a prospective contest, upon such conditions as may be proper,” reads Article 16-112 of the election law.

However, the disputed clause could, in its current wording, be argued to suggest that ballots can be challenged only before canvassing.

The timing of the ballot contest and accompanying judicial review could be re-extended to beyond ballot tabulation—as has long been standard election procedure until the changes slipped through with the new law—if the state appeal court upholds the ruling.

Extending Absentee Voting Provisions Is ‘Orwellian’

The Republicans who challenged the election law in this case have also asked the court to rule against the state’s new expanded absentee voting provisions.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, the Democrat-majority state legislature expanded absentee voting access in August 2020 to allow any voter who is afraid of the risk of “contracting or spreading a disease” to use absentee voting.

Before the law was amended, voters could justify the usage of absentee ballots only because of actual illness.

In January this year, the legislature extended the expiration date of the amendment to the end of 2022, which covers the Nov. 8 midterm elections.

Justice Freestone said she couldn’t overturn the rule because the issue had already been ruled on by the state appellate courts and is being appealed in the state’s appellate courts and the highest court.

However, she said the expanded absentee voting was against the will of the New York people and gave rise to opportunities for fraud, coercion, and other types of mischief.

“Despite the express will of the People against universal absentee voting by the defeat of Proposal 4 in 2021, the Legislature appears poised to continue the expanded absentee voting provisions of New York State Election Law forward ab infinito in an Orwellian perpetual state of health emergency and cloaked in the veneer of ‘voter enfranchisement,’” she concluded.

Affiliate News Feeds

  • Reuters
  • Washington Examiner
  • The Federalist
  • The Epoch Times
  • The Guardian
  • The Gateway Pundit
  • Judicial Watch

By Naveen Athrappully NASA announced on Tuesday that it intends to cancel the development of its GeoCarb mission, which was proposed to be a low-cost satellite aimed at monitoring greenhouse gas… [...]

By Bryan Jung The rate of job cuts in the United States soared 127 percent in November, amid a wave of layoffs in the tech industry. The American employers announced 76,835 cuts… [...]

By Jennifer Margulis and Joe Wang What medicine should you take? How should you treat any given illness? What preventative measures are most effective for you? Which vaccines do you need? These… [...]

A key Senate vote over whether to provide paid sick leave for rail workers is highlighting a divide within the GOP, a party that has increasingly tried to position itself… [...]

Transmission infrastructure will need to double or triple to accommodate the growth. [...]

Bot countries experienced giant leaps in the advancement of their space exploration goals. [...]

Anyone who actually watched 'Wednesday' can see that the 'racism' accusations are ridiculous and performative. [...]

Chuck DeVore's historical fiction book 'Crisis of the House Never United: A Novel of Early America' demonstrates not only why procedure and patience matter, but also the genius of the… [...]

Under Merrick Garland, the DOJ is little more than a partisan apparatus used to punish the Biden administration's enemies. [...]

New York’s quest to replace the troubled Rikers Island jail complex with smaller facilities across the five boroughs could lead to either hazardous overcrowding or the release of dangerous detainees,… [...]

Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) tried to use federal agencies like the Department of Justice and the Internal Revenue Service to act against groups propagating conservative programs, according to documents (pdf)… [...]

President Joe Biden on Dec. 2 signed legislation that forces rail unions to adopt an agreement, averting a strike by rail workers. “I know this was a tough vote for… [...]

Exclusive: Labour says ministers have been told repeatedly that people with prepayment meters are not getting enough supportCase studies: ‘I can’t afford to heat my son’s room’Up to half a… [...]

Health Security Agency issues rare alert over rise in cases, urging people to seek immediate medical help if they see symptomsQ&A: what are the symptoms and how can strep A… [...]

Moscow says west’s refusal to recognise illegally annexed regions is a barrier to peace talksRussia tested a new missile defence system rocket, its defence ministry said today.The missile was launched… [...]

Infowars founder Alex Jones on Friday filed for personal bankruptcy protection in a Texas court after the Sandy Hook verdict. A Connecticut judge last month ordered Alex Jones to pay… [...]

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy is warning GOP House members to vote for him for Speaker or else. The GOP barely took over the US House of Representatives after this… [...]

The U.S. Sixth Circuit Court ruled unanimously to uphold a class action injunction protecting Air Force personnel who declined the COVID vaccine from punitive measures. In the ruling, Judge Murphy… [...]

From Fox News: The Secret Service will not say why they changed their position regarding a government watchdog’s records request into Hunter Biden’s gun investigation records. Government watchdog Judicial Watch… [...]

(Washington, DC) – Judicial Watch announced today that the United States Secret Service has repeatedly changed its position about whether it is in possession of records related to the investigation… [...]

The Biden administration is giving a nonprofit partially funded by leftwing billionaire George Soros’s Open Society Foundations (OSF) $12 million to strengthen labor rights and empower workers in three Latin… [...]


USNN World News (USNN) USNN World News Corporation is a media company consisting of a series of sites specializing in the collection, publication and distribution of public opinion information, local,...