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New York has canceled its Democratic presidential primary, scheduled for June 23, for the first time ever due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The move by Democrats on the New York State Board of Elections followed Sen. Bernie Sanders’ announcement that he would suspend his presidential campaign, rendering former Vice President Joe Biden the presumptive Democratic nominee.
Just a day earlier, Sanders’ campaign asked the New York State Board of Elections to let him name remain on the Democratic primary ballot, saying doing so would impede “efforts to unify the Democratic Party in advance of November elections.”
The state still plans to hold congressional and state-level primaries on June 23, but New York Democratic Party chair Jay Jacobs said canceling the state’s presidential primary would mean a lower expected turnout and a reduced need for polling places.
“It just makes so much sense given the extraordinary nature of the challenge,” Jacobs said last week.
The move is sure to upset Sanders, whose campaign on Sunday asked the commissioners not to cancel the primary. Sanders endorsed Biden on April 13, but when he suspended his campaign he said he hoped to keep amassing delegates in an effort to influence the Democratic party platform.
This story is developing…
The Associated Press contributed to this report.