Cardozo's commitment to active, non-partisan engagement in the election process is tied to our deep roots in public service and social justice. Our Floersheimer Center for Constitutional Democracy offers Cardozo community members information about registration and voting, and features the efforts of Cardozo students working to help protect free and fair elections.
Explaining Ranked Choice Voting
Ranked Choice Voting will be used for the first time in New York City in the June 22, 2021 Primary Elections. All citywide offices are on the June 22nd ballot.
What is Ranked Choice Voting?
- Ranked Choice Voting works almost exactly like traditional single-vote elections: You get a ballot and vote for your preferred candidates. However, instead of picking only one candidate per race, you may rank up to 5 per race. This means voters get more chances to express their preferences.
- After all the votes are cast, vote counting is done in rounds. During the first round, if one candidate receives more than 50% of the first-choice votes, they are the winner. If no candidate receives more than 50% of the first-choice votes, then the candidate with the fewest votes is eliminated. Votes that had been cast as first-choice votes for the eliminated candidate will be reallocated to those voters’ second choices. If a candidate receives more than 50% of the votes after the reallocation, then that candidate is the winner. This process repeats until one candidate has more than 50% of the vote.
NYC voters chose to adopt Ranked Choice Voting in 2019. Supporters of Ranked Choice Voting argue that:
- It enables voters to express their preferences more accurately.
- It enables voters to support long-shot candidates without feeling like they are wasting their vote.
- It encourages more candidates to run, especially women and people of color.
- It discourages negative campaigning because candidates must compete for the support of their opponents’ voters.
How do I fill out a Ranked Choice ballot?
- Rank your preferred candidates 1 through 5. That’s it!
- If you don’t have 5 preferred candidates, you may rank fewer. It is entirely your choice. You can even rank just one candidate and stop there.
- Make sure you only rank each candidate once, and make sure you only have one candidate in each rank. If you need help, just ask an election official.
Other Upcoming Trainings
- There are plenty of other online trainings to get you more familiar with the process:
- https://www.voting.nyc/get-involved/voter-trainings/ [June 8th, 9th, 17th]
- https://rankthevotenyc.org/events/ [June 15th and 20th]
Upcoming Voter Registration Deadlines
- Oct 08
Applications must be postmarked no later than October 8, 2021 and received by a board of elections no later than October 13, 2021.
The deadline to register to vote in the June 22, 2021 Primary Election has passed.
- Oct 12
Deadline to register to vote by mail or in-person.
The deadline to register to vote in the June 8, 2021 Primary Election has passed.
- Oct 18
Deadline to register to vote online, by mail and in-person.
The deadline to register to vote for the May 18, 2021 Primary and Special Elections has passed.
Voter Information for New York
- Primary elections will be held on Tuesday, June 22, 2021. The deadline to register to vote in the June 22nd primary has passed.
- Early voting in the primary election is open from June 12 to June 22nd. Read more here.
- All NYC voters are eligible to vote by mail in the June 22nd primary election due to COVID-19. Read more here.
- The next general election will be held on Tuesday, November 2, 2021.
- The deadline to register to vote (in-person or via postmarked mail) in the general election is October 8, 2021.
- The deadline to request an absentee ballot for the general election online or via email, fax or mail is October 26, 2021.
- All absentee ballots must be postmarked or received in-person by November 2, 2021. All absentee ballots must be received in the mail by November 9, 2021.
Student Election Protection Efforts
The Floersheimer Center is proud of the many Cardozo students who work each election cycle to ensure safe and fair elections. In the spirit of encouraging civic participation on Election Day, all election-related absences were excused for Fall 2020.
Below are highlights of some of the Fall 2020 election protection work Cardozo students took part in:
- LALSA partnered with LatinoJustice to provide Spanish-language election protection in NY, FL, GA, and PA.
- WLI members volunteered to be poll workers and did remote voter registration work.
- Students in the New York State Attorney General field clinic worked on the state's election protection hotline.
- Cardozo NLG members volunteered to be poll workers.
- MLSA and BLSA hosted a panel on October 20, 2020, about voting rights and the 2020 election.
About the Floersheimer Center
Established in 2000 through a gift from Dr. Stephen Floersheimer, the center supports research by scholars and policymakers, hosts speakers and conferences, issues publications, and provides financial support for visiting scholars as well as student projects. Topics of particular concern include civil liberties in an age of terrorism, the structures of democratic government, and the relationship between church and state.