vote-button-3A grumpy person’s guide to the Presidential primary in New York:

1. If you’re not enrolled in a political party (Democratic or Republican), you can’t vote, because they are closed primaries. New York has, arguably, the most restrictive primary voting regulations in the country. New voters had to enroll in a party by March 25, but previously registered folks would have had to have switched their party affiliation by October 9 of LAST year. There is pending legislation to change that, but it won’t affect this year.

Find out if you are registered to vote, if you are enrolled in a party, and where you vote.

2. If you need to vote by absentee ballot, it’s too late to write the Board of Elections a letter requesting it. However, you can pick up an application, or print one out, and deliver the application in person no later than the day before the election, i.e., April 18.

3. The absentee ballot itself “must either be personally delivered to the board of elections no later than the close of polls on election day, or postmarked by a governmental postal service not later than the day before the election and received no later than the 7th day after the election.”

4. You may need that absentee ballot because the polls do not open until 12 noon in most of upstate New York, closing at 9 p.m. In New York City and the counties of Nassau, Suffolk, Westchester, Rockland, Orange, Putnam and Erie, the polls open at 6 a.m. and close at 9 p.m.

5. You will have the opportunity to vote for the candidates and, on the Democratic side, also their delegates. Whether or not you vote for delegates, the candidates will get delegates proportionate to his or her votes. So if there are seven delegate slots, whoever get more votes, based on the allocation, will be the first one or ones chosen to go to the convention.

The candidates on the Democratic side are U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders (VT) and former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

The candidates on the Republican side are business mogul Donald J. Trump, governor John R. Kasich (OH), surgeon Ben Carson, and U.S. Senator Ted Cruz (TX).

Here are some demographics of New Yorkers.

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