Board of Elections gaffe may nullify New York soldiers' overseas absentee ballots
BY Thomas M. Defrank, Richard Sisk and Lukas I. Alpert
DAILY NEWS STAFF WRITERS
Sen. Charles Schumer blasted Board of Elections officials Monday for blowing a deadline for sending ballots to troops overseas - putting their chance to vote at risk.
"Our troops sacrifice their lives to protect our freedoms. They should never, ever be denied the right to vote," Schumer said.
There are approximately 50,000 New York City residents serving overseas - and 320,000 statewide.
Elections officials were originally supposed to ship the ballots to troops by Sept. 17. Because New York primaries were held Sept. 14, the federal government granted local officials an extension until Oct. 1.
But the state Board of Elections last week informed the Department of Defense that officials in New York City, Westchester, Putnam, Erie and Niagara Counties had failed to send the ballots by the Oct. 1 deadline.