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N.Y. Judge: Fear of COVID Not a Valid Reason for Absentee Ballots

An 'Orwellian perpetual state of health emergency' that is 'cloaked in the veneer of ‘voter enfranchisement... '

(Joshua Paladino, Headline USA) A New York judge ruled on Friday that fear of COVID-19 does not give citizens a right to vote by absentee ballot.

In a 28-page decision, Saratoga County Supreme Court Justice Dianne Freestone ordered local election boards to stop counting newly received absentee ballots and “preserve” them while a lawsuit filed by state Republicans proceeds, Fox News reported.

The order does not affect absentee ballots that have been received and counted.

Freestone acknowledged that the state legislature, with its Democrat supermajorities, seems poised to expand no-excuse absentee voting, further flooding the voting system with mail-in ballots that have historically proved ripe for fraud.

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She wrote that the state’s Democrats want to expand absentee ballot access in an “Orwellian perpetual state of health emergency” that is “cloaked in the veneer of ‘voter enfranchisement.'”

The Democrat legislature let local election boards start counting absentee ballots before voting day because the counting delays during the 2020 election lasted for weeks.

But that means election officials handle ballots for weeks before the election, further increasing the chances for fraud and mismanagement.

Republicans praised Freestone’s decision.

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“Let’s hope now that they preserve our ability to make sure that our elections are done with integrity and that voters are verified, and that this system of absentee balloting—that it is held to a high standard—that way to ensure that each citizen gets one vote,” New York state Rep. Robert Smullen, a plaintiff in the lawsuit, said, according to WRGB.

Smullen noted that New York’s “voters said last November that they didn’t want no-excuse absentee voting,” which is “essentially mail-in voting.”

Democrats appealed the ruling and asked a judge to reverse Freestone’s order.

Common Cause New York, a left-wing election group, said Freestone’s ruling will have little effect on absentee ballot voting and may not take effect this year.

“And, even if it does, it would only affect the time and way absentee ballots are counted – you can still vote absentee as planned, and your ballot will still be counted,” the group said.

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