Voters approve environmental proposition, but reject two expanding electoral rights
Joshua Solomon reports in the Times Union that state voters approved a constitutional amendment guaranteeing New Yorkers the right to "clean air and water and a healthful environment," but voted against two expansions of voting rights, and a change to the redistricting process. The "Green Amendment" was approved 61 percent to 26 percent, according to unofficial results on election night. The state's Republican Party opposed the proposition, saying it would lead to unnecessary regulation and costly litigation. Republicans also opposed changes to the state's redistricting process, and voters agreed, with only 39 percent in favor of the changes that good government groups said would give the majority party redistricting power, rather than creating a nonpartisan way to draw the lines. Same-day voter registration also failed, losing 39 percent to 50 percent. And voters did not want no-excuse absentee voting, which was allowed during the COVID-19 pandemic. Some Republicans warned, without evidence, that those changes would increase the risk of voter fraud. A fifth constitutional change that expanded the jurisdictional powers of New York City's civil courts was approved. Read more about this story in the Times Union.