A Manhattan Federal Judge said she will not halt the upcoming New York City's Bronx Borough Democratic Primaries amid new allegations of election rigging, but warned that she will order a do-over if the alarming claims bear out. “I have the power to order a new election and will do so if I find irreparable harm,” Judge Kimba Wood said at a Court hearing Tuesday.
The Judge gave the warning following claims by a group of Bronx activists who say Democratic Party Leaders in the Borough have been nominating them and other people to a Local Political body that helps select the candidates without their knowledge or permission.
The activists have accused Local Political Leaders in Court filings of selecting “victims” to nominate to the Bronx Democratic County Committee who they “believe either will not notice their candidacy, or who can be easily controlled by threats.”
The goal, the activists said, is to turn the County Committee, which is supposed to be made up of 2,500 willing Bronx residents, “into a 400-person, authoritarian farce.”
The activists asked Judge Wood to halt the Sept. 13 Primaries as a result of their findings. But she ordered that the Primaries move forward for now.
Wood also reprimanded the Bronx Democratic Party for allegedly retaliating against one of the plaintiffs of the lawsuit by barring her from working at the polls next week. “If they retaliated, that’s a problem,” Judge Wood said before receiving assurances that plaintiff Ilka Rios would be reinstated as a Voting booth worker.
Following the lawsuit, Rios got a call telling her not to bother coming to work as a Voting Poll worker, she said. “It’s clear it was retaliation,” said Rios, who said she has worked eight years as a Voting Poll worker without any problems.
Rios is one of more than a dozen people claiming they were nominated to the Bronx Democratic County Committee without their knowledge.
NYC Wins When Everyone Can Vote! Michael H. Drucker