It's primary day

voting machine lever arm

Bonus reason for voting today in some places: an extra turn on the soon-to-be-gone lever machines.

And you should vote. Really, you should, because today is the de facto election day for a handful of local races.

The winner of today's Democratic primary for the NY 21st Congressional District (McNulty's seat) will almost surely win the election in November. And in the race for the 46th State Senate district (Neil Breslin's seat), there aren't any Republicans running.

And even in races that will ultimately be decided in November, voting today lets you have some say about who gets a shot at the job -- especially since fewer people vote in primaries.

That said, if you're not registered to a party you're pretty much out of luck because NY doesn't have open primaries.

Polls are open today from noon to 9 pm. Here's how you can find out where to vote.

photo: Flickr user Joe Schlabotnik


I am SO going to vote today. I registered when I moved here and Hillary totally called my house during the Senate elections to remind me to vote. We now meet for tea whenever she's in town. I'm actually on my way to meeting Phil Steck for ice cream as I type this.

Can anyone explain why voting only takes place from 12 to 6? Most people work from 9 to 5, leaving a whole hour to get from work to the voting booth. How idiotic.

I've heard a lot about health care, ending the war, and the economy in this election. But I want to know which one of these candidates will fight for my right to party? Like, after I pound a few back on my lunch break my boss gets all grumpy grumpy sad face about it. For once I wish government would address real issues concerning real Americans. Like why my boss is such a prick.

It's voting from 12 to 9. That gives people four hours after work. And legally speaking, your place of work is required to allow you time to go vote. So in theory it should be enough time. However, no one works close to their polling stations so it's sort of moot.

Thanks, Katherine. I'm less annoyed now.

Let's be honest, if your not registered to THE Democratic party your pretty much out of luck in Albany. But there are other ways to take part in the election even if your so disgusted by the two party system that you couldn't ever bring yourself to registering with either party. You can donate money, canvass, phone bank, or just let everybody on AOA know that they should vote for Steck cause he supports single payer health care, drives a hybrid, and puts his campaign headquarters on the happeningest corner in Albany!

Phil Steck also hired a private investigator to watch for the person stealing signs. That doesn't sound like someone I want in Congress. Doesn't he have better things to spend money on?

Which candidate uses the phrase "supporting an expanded and more effective public transportation infrastructure" as part of their very comprehensive energy statement on their website? That's who has my vote.

@ Katherine:
"no one works close to their polling stations so it's sort of moot."

maybe environmentally irresponsible suburbanites who commute miles into work and support urban sprawl. The vast majority of Albanians who I know, however, live within walking distance or a short bus ride from their office.

Re: hiring a PI to track down the sign thief --- Stealing campaign signs is a serious crime as it subverts a private citizen's voice in the democratic process, and regardless of whether I support their candidate or not I feel a bit of anger on behalf of the citizen who was essentially muzzled by a petty partisan. At the same time it's completely understandable if the police need to focus their attention to other crimes where public safety might be involved. Steck did the taxpayer a favor by paying someone (most likely a small business) to do the onerous legwork needed to find the culprit. How is that a bad thing?

I walk my dog to my polling station (in Albany) every election. It's one of the small pleasures of urban life. Each time one of the poll watchers will ask with some merriment if my dog is Democrat or Republican, and each time I announce she's Independent. It's a little routine. Then the dog goes into the voting booth with me, with her rump and tail sticking out and everybody laughs. (p.s. I was an Independent for a long time until I felt compelled to become a Democrat to vote for Carl McCall in the primary for
Governor. Never did switch back.)

@ Bill

I don't live in the suburbs but I do commute miles to work. I thought moving to the country, building a solar powered house and growing alot of my own food was the right thing to do, so please don't lump all commuters in the same irresponsible bucket.

I didn't mean what I said as a condemnation on people who live and work in other places. Sometimes that can't be helped or is even a neccesity. Even if you live in Washington Park and work downtown it may be cumbersome to get to your polling station in the middle of a work day.

We too walked our dog Lucky to vote but took turns waiting outside with her while the other voted. Next time I'm definately going to be brave and bring her in!

Sorry Bill - I live in Albany and work in Albany and there's no way I could walk or take a CDTA bus to my polling station and be back at my desk within my lunch hour.


What's prohibiting you from building a solar-paneled house, growing some of your own food, buying the rest locally grown, and NOT guzzling gas on a daily commute of "miles", by living in a more densely populated area? I'm sure the extra money you'd have to pay for having a garden-friendly urban backyard would easily be eclipsed by the money you spend on gas, insurance, upkeep, etc.

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