NEW YORK — Ignoring decades of precedence, the New York Board of Elections canceled the June 23rd primary election. This follows their decision to kick multiple candidates off the ballot and Governor Cuomo’s cancellation of several special elections late last week.

In response to these announcements, New American Leaders and New American Leaders Action Fund Founder and President Sayu Bhojwani released the following statement:

“Canceling elections, postponing special elections, and throwing candidates off the ballot sounds like news from a sham democracy, not the United States. But right here in New York, all of these things have just occurred. While Trump may be the biggest threat to our democracy, actions like these are a close second.

“Let’s be clear—to keep voters safe during this pandemic, there are many actions that should be taken, including instituting vote by mail and same day voter registration programs—decisions that would actually help New Americans and people of color vote. The actions taken by Governor Cuomo and the New York Board of Elections do none of these things. Instead, they simply protect establishment strongholds and reinforce barriers for New American majority candidates. Despite statements claiming to want to help our communities, their actions speak louder than any words can.

“This decision is just the latest in a recent series of attacks on our democracy. Between canceling the presidential primary and not allowing Sanders delegates on the ballot to removing groundbreaking candidates like Moumita Ahmed and Mary Jobaida from the ballot under weak pretenses, it’s clear that these actions are driven by fear and a desire to protect the political status quo. As a movement driven by immigrants, New Americans, and people of color in New York and across the country, we are outraged by these decisions. We are committed to ensuring everyone is heard and represented. We will not allow our votes, candidates, or communities to be used as pawns in political games and will hold any official accountable for threatening our democratic rights.”

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New American Leaders (NAL) is the only national, nonpartisan organization focused on bringing New Americans into the political process by preparing first and second generation Americans to use their power and potential in elected office.