NY delays presidential primary; nurses plead for masks

Cuomo shifts primary to June 23rd

WBEN Newsroom
March 28, 2020 - 2:14 pm
Gov. Andrew Cuomo

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo speaks during a news conference against a backdrop of medical supplies at the Jacob Javits Center/AP Photo

NEW YORK (AP/WBEN) — Gov. Andrew Cuomo postponed New York's presidential primary from April to June to keep people from gathering amid of the state's coronavirus outbreak. The state's death toll from the virus rose above 700.

"I don't think it's wise to be bringing a lot of people to one lcoation to vote. A lot of people touching one doorknob, a lot of people touching one pen," says Cuomo. "We are going to delay (the presidential primary) and link it to an election that was previously scheduled to June 23rd."

June 23rd is already the scheduled date for legislative and congressional primaries.

With cases expected to mushroom toward a mid-to-late-April peak, nurses made anguished pleas Saturday for more protective equipment and rebuffed officials' claims that supplies are adequate. Cuomo took a manual-pump air mask in hand to show what might lie in store if needed ventilators don't arrive.

New York joins over a dozen states that have delayed some elections. A smaller group including Ohio, Georgia, Louisiana, Connecticut, Maryland, Rhode Island, Indiana and Kentucky have also postponed their presidential primaries.

The governor’s decision came as election commissioners across New York warned they were “risking” their health and safety to meet impending deadlines for testing machines and preparing ballots ahead of the April 28 date.

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