It’s Illegal to Take a Picture With Your Ballot in New York
You might want to think before you take your #BallotSelfie.
If you're looking to show off that you voted this year, you should think about how you're going to do that. According to the Democrat & Chronicle, it is illegal to take a picture of a completed ballot in New York State. In New York State, showing a completed ballot is a misdemeanor crime and it is rarely enforced.
Multiple cases in New York have tried to invalidate the law that makes it illegal in New York State to show a completed ballot, but all have failed. According to the Democrat & Chronicle, in 2017, a federal judge in Manhattan ruled against voters wishing to invalidate the law. The voters argued that the law violates the New York State Constitution and the United States Constitution. U.S. District Judge P. Kevin Castel found that the law does not infringe on the voters' first and 14th amendment rights.
According to the Democrat & Chronicle, the law was created over 120 years ago to deter vote-buying. Vote buying is someone paying you to vote for a specific candidate. Showing a completed ballot is a way to show a buyer that they have delivered on the promise to get paid. If you are found in violation of the law, you could face up to a year in jail and a $1,000 fine.
If you want to show that you made it to the polls, you are allowed to show a blank ballot in New York State. Taking a selfie with a blank ballot is perfectly legal, if it is a completed ballot it is illegal.