Read below for frequently asked questions about NYC's new system of ranked choice voting from DemocracyNYC and the Campaign Finance Board.
You can rank up to 5 candidates in order of preference, instead of choosing just one.
You can still vote for just one candidate if you prefer.
The next Ranked Choice Voting election is the citywide Primary election on June 22nd. Find upcoming election dates and deadlines at voting.nyc.
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Why are we using Ranked Choice Voting?
New Yorkers elected to use Ranked Choice Voting in a 2019 ballot measure. It passed with 73.5% support.
Which elections will use Ranked Choice Voting?
NYC will use Ranked Choice Voting in primary and special elections for local offices: Mayor, Public Advocate, Comptroller, Borough President, and City Council.
How to fill out your ballot
Do not rank a candidate more than once. If you do, only your top ranking for them will count.
Do not give multiple candidates the same ranking. If you choose more than one candidate as your first choice, your ballot will not be valid.
How your ballot will be counted
If a candidate receives more than 50% of first-choice votes, they win the election.
If no candidate earns more than 50% of first-choice votes, then counting will continue in rounds.
Each round, the candidate with the fewest votes is eliminated. If your top-choice candidate is eliminated, your vote goes to the next highest ranked candidate on your ballot.
This process continues until there are only 2 candidates left. The candidate with the most votes wins!
What are the benefits of Ranked Choice Voting?
Ranked Choice Voting gives you more say in who gets elected. Even if your top choice candidate does not win, you can still help choose who does.
More civility and less negative campaigning. Candidates who are not your top choice still need your support as your 2nd, 3rd, 4th, or 5th choice. This makes them more likely to appeal to a wider audience.
More diverse and representative candidates win elections. Cities that have implemented Ranked Choice Voting have elected more women and more women of color, making their elected officials more representative of their communities.
What's at Stake?
On June 22 and November 2, New Yorkers will vote in an important citywide Primary and General Election. The June Primary will impact the outcome of a number of critical races for Mayor, Public Advocate, Comptroller, Borough Presidents, and a majority of the 51 City Council seats. These key governmental positions will affect our daily lives and determine how we address issues that matter most to New Yorkers, including housing, education, jobs, how the City spends its money, and public safety.
By voting in local elections New Yorkers can preserve democracy, ensure our voices are heard, and help shape our communities. By knowing our rights, registering voters, making voting plans, and educating our communities on new voting systems, we can safeguard our democracy and move toward greater civic engagement across all five boroughs.
Key Upcoming Dates
For NYC Mayor; Public Advocate; Comptroller; City Council; Borough Presidents; and Manhattan District Attorney*.
*The Manhattan District Attorney race will not use Ranked Choice Voting.
Elections for: NYC Mayor; Public Advocate; Comptroller; City Council; Borough President; and Manhattan District Attorney.
Make Your Plan to Vote
There are three ways to ensure your voice is heard at the ballot box: choose the option that works best for you!
If you would like to vote by mail you can request an absentee ballot online at nycabsentee.com or call 866-868-3692.
Every election will now have 9 consecutive days of early voting, starting 10 days before Election Day! This includes two weekends, early mornings, and late nights.
You can also vote in person on Election Day. Polls are open from 6 AM - 9 PM.
A primary election determines which candidates from each party will be on the general election ballot. You must be registered with a political party to vote in a primary election. The general election determines which candidates get elected into office. You do not need to be registered with a party to vote in a general election.
NY does not require an ID to vote. If you are a first time voter or if you did not fill in the last 4 digits of your Social Security Number or state DMV number on your voter registration form, we recommend bringing an official photo ID with you to the polls.
The Board of Elections provides language assistance at select poll sites in Bengali, Chinese (Cantonese and Mandarin), Hindi, Korean, Punjabi, and Spanish. The NYC Civic Engagement Commission offers language assistance at some poll sites in Arabic, Bengali, Chinese (Cantonese and Mandarin), French, Haitian Creole, Italian, Korean, Polish, Russian, Urdu, and Yiddish. For more information visit on.nyc.gov/PollLangAssist.
If you need help with reading your ballot you may be assisted by a person of your choice (other than your employer or union representative) when you go to vote.
Accessibility at the Polls
To request an accessible absentee ballot visit nycabsentee.com/accessibility.
For more information about voter accessibility and using the ballot marking device, please go to on.nyc.gov/VoteAccess.
We are a nonpartisan city initiative focused on increasing voter participation and civic engagement. DemocracyNYC also works to address and eliminate historic barriers to voting through public education, outreach, and policy reform efforts. Learn more at democracynyc.nyc.gov.
Practice makes perfect, NYC! Get your ranked choice voting practice in NOW before the June Primary: nyc.gov/RCVballot