Saratoga County Supreme Court Judge Dianne Freestone ruled on Friday that New York Democrats “exceeded” the state's constitution by “violating the spirit of absentee voting.”
In her 28-page decision, she reacted to a signed law from former New York Governor Andrew Cuomo which allows someone who is “concerned” about COVID-19 to vote by absentee ballot.
She says Cuomo’s 2020 legislation allows any voter to qualify for an absentee ballot, which violates the constitution.
Her decision will likely take into effect before the 2022 midterm election day, which is only weeks away, but does not affect absentee ballots that have already been cast.
“But [Freestone’s] decision could lead to the overturning of a state law that blocks people from changing their mail-in votes by showing up to cast in-person ballots on Election Day,” the New York Post reports.
“This court is skeptical of such a pollyannaish notion,” Freestone said.
“There is nothing before this court to suggest that the continued overreach of the Legislature into the purview of the New York state constitution shall sunset or that this authority once taken shall be returned,” she added.
“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 –just like the voters said last November that they didn’t want no-excuse absentee voting, essentially mail-in voting– that it is held to a high standard, that way to ensure that each citizen gets one vote,” Republican State Rep. Robert Smullen told CBS 6 Albany.
This ruling is likely music to the ears of forty-fifth President Donald Trump.
“Ultimately, we want same-day voting!” Trump said in June.
“We had a rigged and stolen election. We handed it [the country] off to this group [Biden administration], and they rode our coattails for a year and a half and now you see it’s all coming down,” he added.
This isn't an issue concerning absentee ballots only occurring in New York, either.
Last month, America First Legal (AFL) filed their second lawsuit in Pennsylvania against the Chester County Board of Elections over alleged illegal drop box activity caught on surveillance videos, according to an article published by the AFL.
Pennsylvania election laws require mail-in and absentee ballots be returned by mail or the voter, not another individual. One person is only allowed to drop off one ballot, not multiple.
In the 2022 primary election, only 11 out of 13 drop boxes had voter services monitoring the boxes and making sure all election laws were being followed. The remaining two drop boxes, on the other hand, did not have physical voter services monitoring them and were available 24 hours a day.
However, those two drop boxes did have security cameras. The camera footage caught over 330 individuals depositing void, invalid, or multiple ballots at once – all violating Pennsylvania election laws.
The Board of Election has these same 13 drop boxes authorized and set for the upcoming 2022 midterm election.