Issues: Primaries

Judges must fix redistricting mess

The Queens Chronicle wrote an article that further delves into the problems of the Senate Republicans' redistricting proposal and how federal judges may need to step in.

Gov. Cuomo is reforming the state government in leaps and bounds, but many members of the Legislature haven’t gotten the memo yet. So the redrawing of lawmakers’ districts for the Assembly, Senate and U.S. Congress following the Census has been typical of the Albany of years past: behind schedule, nonsensical in many respects and, of course, utterly politicized.

February 22, 2012
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The geography 
of a sham

The Times Union wrote an editorial that talks about redistricting and how it has recently become even clearer that the Senate Republicans are attempting to exploit the redistricting process as a means to promote their partisan agenda.

Our opinion: Yet again, we’re shown how blatantly partisan the redistricting process is. It’s not to late for the Legislature to do the right thing, but if it doesn’t, we’ll look to Governor Cuomo to stand firm.

 

Yes, we are writing again about redistricting, a topic that New York lawmakers are undoubtedly counting on people to get so tired of that we’ll all just shut up and let them rig elections for the next 10 years.

 

February 15, 2012
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Albany Redistricting Needs Court Master, Judge Rules

An editorial written by the New York Times discusses the possibility of courts intervening in the redistricting process, as a result of the Senate Republicans' inability to draw lines that are fair.

A federal judge, citing lawmakers’ “current state of inaction” in redrawing New York’s political map, recommended on Monday that the state’s redistricting process be turned over to a court-appointed special master.

 

Noting that Congressional primaries are scheduled for June, the judge, Dora L. Irizarry of Federal District Court in Brooklyn, said it was time for the federal courts to take charge of ensuring that New York has an election process that complies with state and federal law.

 

February 14, 2012
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Senator Montgomery Announces NYSABPRL's 41st Annual Legislative Conference Workshop & Event Schedule

The 41st Annual Legislative Conference of the NYS Association of Black and Puerto Rican Legislators will convene on Friday, February 17th and conclude on Sunday, February 19th, 2012. The theme of this year’s conference is “Open Doors to Employment, Opens Doors to Empowerment."

The Conference schedule of educational workshops and weekend-long events is included here in a pdf format that can be downloaded.  More information on the Legislative Conference may be obtained by visiting www.nysabprl.org.

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February 9, 2012
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Gov. Cuomo must veto ridiculous new Senate and Assembly districts

An editorial by the New York Daily News talks about the Senate Republican's draft for new Senate and Assembly districts and how they have used redistricting to increase their power while abandoning the interests of voters.

Nothing less than the future of representative democracy in New York is on the line as the Legislature establishes new district lines based on the latest census.

By long-standing practice, lawmakers have drawn maps to protect incumbents while shutting out challengers. Democrats load up Assembly districts with Democrats; Republicans stock Senate districts with Republicans.

January 30, 2012
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A Veto for the Voters

The New York Times wrote an editorial discussing the Senate Republican's proposed legislative district maps, which are so blatantly partisan that Governor Cuomo's office has called them "simply unacceptable."

This week, New York State lawmakers unveiled proposed legislative district maps, based on the 2010 census and required in time for this year’s elections. The maps, as expected, are entirely designed to protect party interests for Republicans who control the State Senate districts and Democrats who run the Assembly.

January 30, 2012
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Sen. Gianaris on Redistricting and the Primary Date

Capital Tonight had an interview with Senator Gianaris discussing the egregiously drawn district maps and the new primary date.

Watch the interview here.

January 30, 2012
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Legislative Task Force on Demographic Research and Reapportionment

@Senator Dilan is the Democratic Minority Member sitting on LATFOR. He has been fighting to keep the process open, fair and free of partisan gerrymandering. Keep up to date with the Task Force and the Senator’s latest efforts.

 

January 24, 2012
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Cuomo renews vow to veto district lines drawn by joint legislative commission

NCPR News reported on Governor Cuomo's stance on not supporting district lines drawn by joint legislation commision, because they are not independent and nonpartisan. Senator Gianaris spoke with Karen Dewitt, praises Cuomo's unwavering position on the issue of redistricting and the need for a fairer process.

Governor Andrew Cuomo is stating in no uncertain terms that he intends to veto the redistricting lines now being devised by a joint legislative commission, because they are not independent and nonpartisan. 

[...]

October 27, 2011
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Senator Krueger Encourages You to Get Involved in Redistricting Process

The State’s Task Force charged with developing a redistricting plan for the State’s Congressional, Senate and Assembly district lines will be holding a hearing in Manhattan this Wednesday, the 21st.

Senator Krueger encourages you to attend this meeting and submit a comment. Involvement is needed to best ensure our democratic process is not tainted by politically-driven gerrymandering.

Click HERE for information on this week’s hearing and how to submit testimony.

September 19, 2011
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GIANARIS BILLS STRENGTHEN VOTING PROCESS

Queens Gazette wrote about the bills Senator Gianaris has introduced that enchance the voting process:

Four bills which would result in increased voter participation, a more efficient Board of Elections and make ballot casting more convenient have been introduced by state Senator Michael Gianaris (D–Astoria).

The lawmaker said, “The upcoming special elections remind us of the importance of voting. As we quickly approach 2012, it is vital that we make voting an accessible and convenient process in order to maximize turnout. Every ballot counts and New Yorkers must be able to exercise this valuable right as easily as possible.”

The four bills do the following:

September 14, 2011
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SENATOR GIANARIS SEEKS TO ENHANCE VOTING PROCESS THROUGH SPONSORED LEGISLATION

Reminds New Yorkers of the importance of voting in upcoming September 13 elections.

Queens, NY – Senator Michael Gianaris has introduced four bills in the Senate that would strengthen the voting process and make ballot-casting more convenient. These measures would result in increased voter participation and a more efficient Board of Elections.

Senator Gianaris said, “The upcoming special elections remind us of the importance of voting. As we quickly approach 2012, it is vital that we make voting an accessible and convenient process in order to maximize turnout. Every ballot counts, and New Yorkers must be able to exercise this valuable right as easily as possible.”

The four bills amend New York State law in the following ways:

September 9, 2011
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Ethics Law Just First Step, Reformers Say

By Karen DeWitt

Governor Cuomo signed into law new ethics oversight legislation, but some say the measure is flawed, and that there is still work to be done to fight corruption in government.

Cuomo signed the ethics law without fanfare or a public ceremony. In a statement, he touted the new stricter requirements for disclosure of lawmakers' outside income, a 14 member ethics panel empowered to probe charges of corruption, and the elimination of pensions for elected officials in the future who are convicted of a felony. Cuomo called it a "major step forward in restoring the people's trust in government and changing the way Albany does business".

August 24, 2011
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SENATOR MONTGOMERY HONORS LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT AWARD RECIPIENT DOROTHY BURNHAM, A BROOKLYN “RENAISSANCE WOMAN”

The lifetime achievements of Brooklyn native Dorothy Burnham were recognized and lauded by NYS Senator Velmanette Montgomery (D-Brooklyn) during the reading of a Senate resolution, which was unanimously passed by the full Senate during the final days of the 2011 Legislative Session. The resolution paid tribute to Dorothy Burnham’s many notable contributions to our public education system, the advancement of civil rights, and to the promotion of racial and economic equality. Ms. Burnham was also honored for her designation as recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award by the New York Friends of the People's World. “Dorothy Burnham is a Renaissance Woman,” said Senator Montgomery.

July 11, 2011
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Redistricting Override Sign On Letter

Senator Dilan, collegues, remain committed to supporting Gov's veto of LATFOR lines. 

File: 
Redistricting Override Sign On Letter

April 7, 2011
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Gianaris Pushes ‘New Way Forward’ On Redistricing

Capital Tonight's Liz Benjamin highlights Senator Michael Gianaris' push for a New Way Forward on the way Redistricting is done in Albany.

February 28, 2011
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Senate “Heroes of Reform” Say: Keep Your Promise: Pass the Pledge

Senate Reformers Urge New Yorkers to Join the Call for Immediate Action on Mayor Koch’s New York Uprising Heroes of Reform Pledge

(Albany, NY) - On the first day of State Senate session, Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins (35th District – D/I/WF) and Senators designated “Heroes of Reform” by Mayor Ed Koch called on Majority Leader Dean Skelos and Senate leadership today to keep their promise and pass Mayor Koch’s “New York Uprising Heroes of Reform” pledge as the Senate’s first order of business in the New Year.

January 10, 2011
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Voting Machines Forum

On October 4, 2010 Senator Bill Perkins hosted a forum for residents of the 30th District to discuss the new voting machines and any problems that may have arisen on primary day as a result of the new machines.

October 13, 2010
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SENATE ELECTIONS COMMITTEE HEARS WITNESSES AT PUBLIC HEARING ON PRIMARY DAY PROBLEMS WITH NEW VOTING MACHINES, POLL SITE OPERATIONS

Committee Seeks Practical Solutions to Implement for November 2 General Election

Queens, NY, September 29, 2010 -- On Wednesday, September 29, the NYS Senate’s Elections Committee held an afternoon public hearing to determine the extent and cause of problems that occurred with the introduction of paper ballots and optical scan voting machines in the September 14 Primary Day election.

September 30, 2010
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A Celebration: 90 Years of Women Voting

This week, we celebrated the 90th anniversary of a great victory for

women and a radical and hard fought win for American democracy:

women’s suffrage -- the right to VOTE!

 

Sitting here in 2010, it’s hard to imagine a time in American history

during which women were not allowed to vote, especially as we watch

women run for all levels of elected office. But as we celebrate the

90th anniversary of American women’s right to vote, we, as men and

women, must ask ourselves if we are honoring the plight of so many who

came before us and fought for this most fundamental right. The sad

reality is that in areas around the world, women and men are still

August 27, 2010
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