But with Democrats now in control of both chambers of the State Capitol and the governor’s office, things are about to change. Legislative leaders said they intend to pass a voting reform package on Monday to overhaul the state’s voting laws, among the more restrictive in the nation.
The voting reforms are a veritable wish list for those who have blamed New York’s laws for driving down voter turnout. The measures include allowing early voting, preregistration of 16- and 17-year-olds and consolidating state and federal primary elections, which are now held in different months.
Lawmakers also plan to pass bills to allow vote-by-mail and same-day voter registration, though those proposals will also require voter referendums — and passage by the next Legislature, scheduled to be seated in 2021 — as they change the State Constitution.