After presiding over a chaotic Democratic presidential primary on April 19, the New York City Board of Elections released its certified election results Friday afternoon showing that it has rejected 91,000 provisional affidavit ballots, or about three out of every four cast that day. Diana Finch, who has served as a poll worker for nearly a decade, said the number of affidavit ballots in her Bronx election district far exceeded the usual number. “The envelopes that are provided to each election district to put the affidavit ballots in were all filled to bursting at my poll site, we had to squeeze the affidavit ballots in,” Finch told The Indypendent. “Clearly the Board of Elections never anticipated having so many affidavits.”
There were a total of 121,056 affidavit ballots submitted, according to the Board of Elections. Finch explained that the 90,998 ballots excluded from the final tally have not been discarded yet—rather set aside for possible further review.
But the burden of proof has now shifted from the Board of Elections to voters.
According to Jonathan Clarke, a lawyer with voter advocacy group Election Justice USA, the voters behind those 90,000 affidavits must request the status of their ballot in person at the BOE’s office and contest it in court if they feel it was wrongly set aside. People whose votes were excluded must act quickly to contest their affidavit status, given the BOE’s recent certification.