POLLS CLOSED: New Yorkers finish casting votes, but absentee ballots lie in wait

traffic safety
New Yorkers took precautions when casting their ballots in the primary on Tuesday, June 23.
Photo by Todd Maisel

The polls have closed in New York’s primary Tuesday in the presidential, Congressional, state and local legislative races.

Most contest winners, however, may not be known for some time, as thousands upon thousands of absentee ballots have yet to be counted.

New Yorkers were encouraged to vote by absentee ballot this election cycle due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and the city’s Board of Elections won’t begin tallying these ballots until June 30.

On Tuesday afternoon, the Board of Elections reported that more than 700,000 ballots absentee have been distributed to registered Democrats alone, but just over 77,000 of them had been returned, or 11% of the total.

Absentee ballots had to be received by the Board of Elections, or at least postmarked, by June 23. It figures that the board will receive additional completed ballots mailed in over the next several days.

Early voting took place across the city this month, but turnout was sparse; by all accounts, traffic was also light at the normal polling sites that were open across the city Tuesday.

The city Board of Elections results is scheduled to post on their website returns that reflect the ballots received on June 23 and during early voting. The preliminary results could change dramatically once the absentee ballots are counted, so we will forego reporting any projections in contests considered too close to call. Visit vote.nyc to view the returns.

Among the races to watch as the vote count begins are the following:

  • The 9th Congressional District primary in Brooklyn pitting Congresswoman Yvette Clarke against four challengers, including City Councilman Chaim Deutsch and Adem Bunkeddeko.
  • The 10th Congressional District primary in Manhattan/Brooklyn, with Congressman Jerry Nadler facing two challengers: Lindsey Boylan and Jonathan Herzog.
  • The 12th Congressional District primary in Manhattan/Queens featuring Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney and three challengers: Suraj Patel, Peter Harrison and Lauren Ashcraft.
  • The 14th Congressional District primary in the Bronx/northwestern Queens pitting freshman Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez against three challengers: Michelle Caruso-Cabrera, Samuel Sloan and Badrun Khan.
  • The 15th Congressional District primary in the Bronx, which has 12 candidates on the ballot seeking to replace retiring Congressman Jose Serrano. 
  • The 16th Congressional District primary in the Bronx/Westchester in which veteran Congressman Eliot Engel is getting a serious challenge from Jamaal Bowman.
  • The five-way Queens Borough President primary featuring City Council Members Costa Constantinides and Donovan Richards, former City Council Member Elizabeth Crowley and two other challengers.

Check with amNY.com in the days ahead for further coverage of the primary.