New York Becomes 1st State to Cancel Presidential Primary Over CCP Virus

Jack Phillips
By Jack Phillips
April 27, 2020Politics
New York Becomes 1st State to Cancel Presidential Primary Over CCP Virus
Democratic presidential hopeful Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) (L) and former vice president Joe Biden (R). (Tim Vizer and Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images)

New York officials canceled the state’s Democratic presidential primary nominating contest that was set for June 23 in an attempt to curb the spread of the CCP virus.

Democrats on New York’s State Board of Elections voted to render the decision on Monday, although the state’s congressional and state-level contests will be held on June 23 as planned. It means, however, that New York is the first state to outright cancel its primary after several other states suspended theirs.

The board’s Democratic co-chairman, Douglas A. Kellner, told The New York Times that he ultimately decided that it was time to say that the primary served no real purpose after Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) dropped out of the race weeks ago, leaving former Vice President Joe Biden virtually unopposed among Democrats.

“What the Sanders campaign wanted is essentially a beauty contest that, given the situation with the public health emergency, seems to be unnecessary and, indeed, frivolous,” Kellner said, adding that he read thousands of messages from Sanders supporters to go ahead with the primary contest.

New York coronavirus
A woman gets off a bus on Flatbush Avenue on April 24, 2020, in the Brooklyn borough of New York. Known as “The City That Never Sleeps,” New York’s streets are particularly empty during the CCP virus (COVID-19) pandemic. (Mark Lennihan/AP Photo)

“Obviously the intent of the legislature was not to have a primary election where there is no real contest,” he added.

Andrew J. Spano, another member of the Board of Elections, told the newspaper that a primary could spread the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus, also called the novel coronavirus, to poll workers and the public across New York, which has the highest number of cases and deaths in the United States.

“We should minimize the risk,” he said of his decision.

Meanwhile, Gov. Andrew Cuomo, a Democrat, told reporters at a daily pandemic briefing that he would not go against the state’s Board of Elections.

“I know there are a lot of election employees, employees of boards of elections, who are nervous about conducting elections. But I’ll leave it up to the Board of Elections,” he said on Monday.

In Wisconson, health officials said about 40 cases of COVID-19 in Milwaukee County were linked to the April 7 elections, according to WUWM.

A week ago, New York Democratic Party chair Jay Jacobs suggested that canceling the primary would mean there is a lower expected turnout and a reduced need for polling stations across the state.

“It just makes so much sense given the extraordinary nature of the challenge,” Jacobs said last week, reported The Associated Press.

Supporters of Sanders had asked state commissioners not to cancel the primary.

“Senator Sanders has collaborated with state parties, the national party and the Biden campaign, to strengthen the Democrats by aligning the party’s progressive and moderate wings. His removal from the ballot would hamper those efforts, to the detriment of the party in the general election,” a lawyer for Sanders’s suspended campaign, Malcolm Seymour, wrote in a letter that was obtained by the Wall Street Journal.

From The Epoch Times

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