Under the Radar by Tom Reynolds
Assemblyman Phil Palmesano is one of the more active legislators and can often be found addressing a SCOPE meeting. Last Monday, he spoke to the Steuben County SCOPE Chapter about some legislation that probably slipped below your radar. All of the legislation is intended to further cement the anti-2A left’s power through election law changes.
A05874 and S350 provide that any legal challenge to the constitutionality of the election law shall be brought in the following designated courts:
first judicial department: New York county;
second judicial department: Westchester county;
third judicial department: Albany county;
fourth judicial department: Erie county.
Previously, one could make an election law challenge in your local NY Supreme Court before a locally elected judge. Now you have to travel and none of these courts are located in central New York.
Micromanaging these court venues means cases will be heard in a select few venues that just so happen to have extremely high concentrations of Democrat representation. (Purely a coincidence?)
A07632A and S07394A expand absentee voting. Near-universal absentee ballots will greatly increase the risk of election fraud.
So, the opportunity for election fraud is increased and it will be more difficult to take a case to court.
A4282b and S3505b provides that certain local elections (outside of New York City) shall now be in an even-numbered year. Changing the election cycle will undoubtedly drown local issues out at the expense of national ones.
Note that it will not change School Board elections which typically have the lowest turn out and are held in schools instead of the regular election places.
One change that may not have gone below your radar is that the Appellate Division of the State Supreme Court in Albany ordered, on July 13th, that New York State’s congressional map be redrawn.
Pursuant to a referendum in 2014, in NY State, redistricting occurs through the Independent Redistricting Commission (IRC), which is bipartisan and evenly split between Democrats and Republicans. However, if the commission fails to reach a decision, the state legislature — which has a sizable Democratic majority — can and did impose a map of their own. That happened in 2022, prompting lawsuits claiming that the legislature’s maps were partisan gerrymandering.
The maps drawn by the legislature were so partisan that even the leftist Court of Appeals struck them down. The 2022 district lines were ultimately drawn by a neutral, court-appointed expert and were thought to be competitive.
Too competitive for Democrat tastes. Republican areas ended up with Republican congresspersons.
Appeals of the latest decision are imminent.
Speaking of the Steuben County Chapter:
Steuben SCOPE is a very active chapter which meets twice a month and it has speakers and contributes to local 2A causes such as the Steuben Chapter of Armed Woman of America and high school trap shooting teams. It supports state SCOPE, advertises 2A issues in the media and supports 2A defense lawsuits.
A few years ago, the only conservative radio talk show in the Central NY Southern Tier (Steuben / Chemung area) was bought up and conservative talk radio disappeared in that area.
Then, WLNL (The Bell) AM 1000 started airing conservative talk radio. The station recently had a fund raiser. Steuben SCOPE offered a $1,000 challenge grant to the fund raiser, which was matched.
The fundraiser offered a prize, chosen by lottery, of a Keuka Lake boat tour for 11 people. The Steuben Chapter won that prize!