ALBANY, NY – In the wake of former Lieutenant Governor Brian Benjamin’s resignation, there is a renewed call to make changes to New York State Election Law.

After former Lt. Governor Brian Benjamin was arrested and charged with campaign finance corruption, Governor Kathy Hochul accepted his resignation. But even though he’s no longer in office, his name will still be on the ticket come the Democratic Primary in June.

“The only way in which somebody can be removed from the ballot is if they die, or if they run for another office, or if they move out of state. And that leaves us with a situation where the voters in the democratic primary will be faced with a ballot that has a candidate who will not take office if they were to win the primary. That’s simply unfair to the voters.”

Executive Director of Common Cause NY, Susan Lerner, says that if people vote for Brian Benjamin in the primary, they will have wasted their vote. Changes to New York’s Election law are now being called for.

” What we are suggesting is a special process that if a candiate is diagnosed with a life threatening illness, or is indicted, or resigns the office for which they are running for re-election, that they can be removed form the ballot,” says Lerner.

Assemblywoman Amy Paulin is advocating for this and is drafting legislation that is expected to be introduced on Friday. I asked her when she’d like this to take effect.

“we’re working out the last possible date that could happen and still conform to the other rules and regulations regarding the election. And we think it’s early May some time. Right now the bill draft says May 1st, we may have some wiggle room to go to May 4th. We are talking with the State Board of Elections to make sure we get it 100 percent right. But that’s approximately what it is. It’s a very tight timeline to address the Brian Benjamin situation,” says Paulin.

If it doesn’t work in this instance, she says passing this legislation will be beneficial in the future. Reporting