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The League of Women Voters of Putnam County spent the summer and fall
working to educate voters on the constitutional convention ballot
proposal. We held public educational forums, passed out comprehensive
brochures on the history and process of conventions, and encouraged
voters to be open to both sides of the debate. We were pleased so
many voters turned over their ballots to vote on the convention
question, but disheartened to see how many people opposed holding a
convention that could have resulted in much needed ethics and voting
State legislative leaders, and eventually the Governor, came out
in opposition to holding a convention. Legislators have
reasoned that ethics and voting reforms are possible without
calling a convention. Although true, they have been slow to
move these reforms. New York State continues to rank among the
worst states in the nation in voter turnout and participation.
According to the Union Capitol Bureau newspaper, we ranked 41 in
the country in the 2016 election. That is shocking news in a
state whose proud motto is, "The Empire State."
Convention or not, New Yorkers are tired of waiting for our
election operations to be modernized. The legislature needs to
act and pass voting reform.
Now that the convention measure has failed, we should all be calling
on both houses of the legislature and the Governor to put their words
into actions. Tell your state Assembly member, Senator, and the
Governor to pass comprehensive voting reforms and bring our election
procedures into the 21st century
Eileen Reilly, President
LWV of Putnam County
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