New York’s ‘No Excuse’ Absentee Ballots Ruled Unconstitutional

A state Supreme Court judge has struck down New York’s controversial voting rule allowing absentee ballots for any reason. Justice Dianne L. Freestone put the brakes on an election change that clearly circumvented the state constitution.

The ruling document guarantees every citizen the right to vote, and it has been amended to allow for those with “illness or physical disability” to request and receive a mail-in ballot.

But in yet another power grab, the heavily-Democratic state legislature decided that the absentee exception applied to anyone suffering from COVID-19.

Or who thinks they could possibly have it. Or get it. In other words, anyone.

The pandemic-era proviso took effect in August 2020, and state Democrats extended it another full year to cover 2022 and the midterm elections. Justice Freestone, however, correctly recognized the ruse and struck it down.

In doing so, she wrote that New York voters “overwhelmingly rejected this broad-sweeping ballot proposal” when it was presented to them for approval as a constitutional amendment.

Voters emphatically said no to changing the New York Constitution and allowing anyone to cast an absentee ballot in any election for any or no reason.

Freestone wrote that the legislative effort to make sweeping changes to absentee voting conflicted with and was in disagreement with established election law as well as the constitution.

Further, she ridiculed the state’s “alarmist statistics” concerning current COVID-19 cases as well as the “collective phantom menaces” of monkeypox and polio.

Freestone noted that if she did not take action to thwart the unconstitutional move, the expiration date for the new rules would stretch into infinity. It is surprising and more than a little refreshing to see a judge stand in the way of a power grab, especially one that all-but-guarantees Democratic wins.

Democrats, of course, quickly filed an appeal.