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  • Writer's pictureNew York City Republicans

New York cancels Republican presidential primary

ALBANY — New York will not hold a Republican presidential primary this year, guaranteeing that President Donald Trump will win all of the state’s delegates.

Nobody besides Trump qualified to appear on the ballot, and primaries in New York are held only if multiple candidates qualify.

Three other Republicans submitted paperwork: former Massachusetts Governor William Weld, businessman Rocky De La Fuente, and former Rep. Joe Walsh of Illinois. The filings from De La Fuente and Walsh included the names of no delegates, meaning they were automatically booted. (It was an academic exercise anyway, since Walsh dropped out of the race last month.)

Weld submitted about half of the required 162 delegates. That meant he had a little bit of leeway, and was given until the end of the day on Monday to submit the remainder. But he submitted no additional names.

“[Weld] is ineligible to appear on the presidential ballot for the Republican Party based on a failure to submit a complete list of delegates,” ruled Peter Kosinski, state Board of Elections GOP co-chair, at a brief board meeting on Tuesday afternoon. “There’s no contested primary, so it will not appear on the ballot in April. Donald Trump is the only candidate for the Republican party in this April’s presidential primary in New York state.”

Nobody thought there was any real chance of Weld winning New York, so Kosinski’s ruling is unlikely to have much impact on presidential politics besides possibly saving Trump a little bit of time around the state’s April 28 vote.

But it’s certainly possible that the decision will be felt further down the ballot. Gov. Andrew Cuomo scheduled five special elections for that day, citing the cost-saving benefits that come with doubling up on votes. Having Trump’s name on the ballot to help drive his supporters to the polls certainly wouldn’t have hurt the Republicans in those races.

State Sen. Chris Jacobs, the Republican candidate running to fill the congressional seat previously occupied by Chris Collins, said that Cuomo scheduled the votes for the same time because he’s a “very political person.”

“This certainly makes a Republican seat more competitive for a Democrat,” Jacobs said. “There will be Democrats coming out because there will be multiple presidential Democratic candidates. But I’m very confident — we have a plan to make sure we get the word out, and we have a very energized electorate who wants to show their support, hopefully of me, but more so of President Trump.”

“[S]ince Corrupt Cuomo put his thumb on the scale by scheduling special elections the same day, we are going to be working day and night to ensure strong Republican victories in the critical seats for congress and the state legislature,” state GOP Chair Nick Langworthy said in a statement. “New Yorkers will reject Democrats’ radical agenda and vote to return common sense to this state.”

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