Republicans Ask New York High Court To Review Mail-In Voting Expansion

WASHINGTON, D.C. — A little over a month before the state’s rapidly approaching June 25 primary, Rep. Elise Stefanik (R) and other Republicans are asking New York’s  highest court to overturn the  state’s universal early mail-in voting law, which permits all voters to vote by mail during the early voting period. 

In a unanimous decision on May 9, a state appellate court rejected the case, leaving the New York Early Mail Voter Act in place for the state’s 2024 elections. Now, Stefanik and her fellow Republican co-plaintiffs are asking the state’s highest court to review the case. 

Sponsored by Senate Deputy Leader Michael Gianaris (D) and signed into law in September 2023, the New York Early Mail Voter Act vastly expands mail-in voting across the Empire State. Prior to the law’s implementation, New Yorkers were only able to vote absentee if they were going to be absent from the county or New York City or they could not vote in person due to an illness or a physical disability. 

In response to the law’s enactment and furthering their relentless attacks on mail-in voting, the Republican National Committee (RNC), National Republican Congressional Committee, New York Republican State Committee, Conservative Party of New York and other prominent Republicans such as Stefanik, immediately filed a lawsuit challenging the law’s constitutionality.  

The trial court dismissed the lawsuit in February after finding that Republicans “failed to meet their heavy burden of proving beyond a reasonable doubt that the Early Mail Voter Act is unconstitutional under the NY Constitution.” Republicans quickly appealed that decision to an appellate court, which also agreed last week that the case should be dismissed. 

As we approach the 2024 presidential election, Republicans have zeroed in on targeting mail-in voting in court. According to Democracy Docket’s database, the GOP and its affiliates are currently involved in 62 active lawsuits, 30 of which specifically target mail-in voting. 

Just last week a different New York court largely rejected a separate GOP-backed challenge to the state’s 2021 absentee ballot counting law. 

Read the notice of appeal here.

Learn more about the case here.