Gotham Gazette

The Place for New York Policy and politics

Citizens Union


From The Archives: New York's Ballot Access Laws

by Gotham Gazette Staff, Jul 08, 2013

New York is one of a handful of states that still requires all candidates — incumbents and challengers — to file petitions with voter signatures to secure a place on the ballot. Those petitions have to comply with a complicated list of requirements for the signatures to be considered valid.

This has turned the whole petition process into a political blood sport. Candidates with experienced election lawyers can bump many of their rivals off the ballot by challenging the validity of their opponents’ petition signatures, disqualifying the signatures from the candidates’ total signature count. These errors can include unclear handwriting, or the absence of a zip code or borough.


Editor's Choice

Everything Dot NYC Council 2.0: Rules Reform Outlines Next Steps in Open Data Overdue & Over Budget, Capital Projects Roll On


The comments section is provided as a free service to our readers. Gotham Gazette's editors reserve the right to delete any comments. Some reasons why comments might get deleted: inappropriate or offensive content, off-topic remarks or spam.

Last Updated (Aug 04, 2014)