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New York’s Voter Suppression

Wall Street Journal

January 15, 2024

Some Americans never register to vote. Those of us who do usually register just once. But over the past two years I’ve registered three times. I might even do it again—for the reason progressives say they endorse: I want my vote to count.

In New York, where I live, it isn’t easy. My deep-blue state engages in a practice it ascribes to less enlightened jurisdictions: voter suppression. As anyone who follows presidential primary politics knows, states and political parties make their own election rules. That’s why independent voters can cast ballots in the New Hampshire primary after choosing a party on Election Day. It’s why voters in Ohio, whether Democrat, Republican or Independent, can take either party ballot when they vote.

States can be broadly grouped as either open or closed primary states. New York is one of 15 closed congressional primary states and one of 24 closed for presidential primaries—and it’s tightly closed. New York is a state where Democratic primaries often decide election results, in part because nonaffiliated voters are shut out of primaries.

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