Letter: August primaries are a form of voter suppression

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To the editor:

After the Court of Appeals tossed out the redistricting maps for congressional and state Senate seats, the new date of the primary has been scheduled for August 23rd. I think this is a form of voter suppression. I believe that the New York State Legislature should petition the court to authorize the primary date to be changed.

The date of the primary should be held in September, not in August. Primaries in New York state used to be held in September. August is a holiday month, many voters will be away on vacation or not paying attention to politics. They certainly will be less likely to watch a debate. An August primary date will result in reduced turnouts.

Delaying the primary to mid- or late-September would provide candidates with an opportunity to have a better appreciation of the issues facing voters in their new district lines. There is not enough time between now and August for candidates to familiarize themselves with the leaders and issues in districts they have no familiarity with. Aren’t our elected officials supposed to be representatives of the people? How can you represent when you don’t know much about the district you want to represent?

Paul Feiner
Greenburgh Town Supervisor