Harry Wilson, who is running in the GOP Primary for Governor, will also attempt to run on a third party, UniteNY ballot line

By Dan Murphy

Four years ago, any New Yorker interested in running for Governor on a third-party, or independent party line had to collect 15,000 signature statewide. Today the number required is 45,000 signatures, a herculean task for most first time candidates with not enough resources. The reason for the tripling of the signatures required is because former Governor Andrew Cuomo and the state legislature approved changes in 2021 to the election law requirements for smaller political parties in NY.

The changes were made at the request of then Gov. Cuomo, who was still angry with the Working Families Party for endorsing actress Cynthia Nixon for Governor in 2018. The election changes were included in the state budget to make it easier for legislators to vote yes, and four, small political parties lost their ballot status to appear automatically on the line every two years: The SAM Party of NY, the Libertarian Party, Independence Party and Green Party are no longer active political parties in New York State.

The Libertarian Party is mounting an effort to collect 45,000 signatures to regain ballot status and run Larry Sharpe for Governor this November. Sharpe ran for Governor on the Libertarian line in 2018.

NY Businessman Harry Wilson, who is running in the republican primary for Governor, will seek a third party line for Governor with UniteNY, according to published reports. UniteNY founder Martin Babinec said, “Unite NY and the committee determined Harry Wilson to have the right experience, focus, and commitment to change NY’s broken system. We welcome New Yorkers of all political persuasions to join us as we seek fundamental change by shifting power out of the hands of party bosses and back into the hands of the people casting votes at the ballot box where it belongs,” https://nystateofpolitics.com/state-of-politics/new-york/ny-state-of-politics/2022/04/18/harry-wilson-vies-for-second-ballot-line-in-governor-s-race.

Wilson is running in a crowded republican primary for Governor with Lee Zeldin, Rob Astorino and Andrew Giuliani. Wilson’s independence was made evident when he released a six point plan to turnaround NY. Wilson’s campaign collected 36,000 signatures to get on the republican line.

Published reports also say that former NYS Democratic Chair Jay Jacobs is preparing to create another party line for democrats to run on in November. Jacob’s decision comes in part because of the Working Families Party nominating different candidates for Governor (Jumanne Williams) and Lt. Governor (Ana Maria Archila).

The name of the new party that Jacobs will attempt to create by collecting 45,000 signature is called The Fair Deal Party. Jacobs served as the Chair of the NY State Democratic Party under former Governor Andrew Cuomo. Cuomo is said to also have interested in running for Governor this year on a third party, independent line.

Those rumors have fueled speculation that Jacobs is creating a party line for Cuomo to run on. Others say that Jacobs will use the line for Governor Kathy Hochul to run on. The answer to whether Hochul or Cuomo will appear on Jacobs line will come after April 24, the date that petitions will be circulated for independent nominating petitions. Candidates and their camapaigns will have until May 31 to collect signatures.

So if someone knocks on your door with a petition next week, it may be from one of these campaigns. Any registered NY voter can sign, from any political party, or if you are a registered voter with no party.