Massachusetts struggles to avoid Yom Kippur clash with 2018 primary
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Massachusetts struggles to avoid Yom Kippur clash with 2018 primary

Secretary of state seeking ideas to prevent vote on eve of Day of Atonement

William Galvin, Secretary of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts speaks on WGBH news, March 18, 2015. (Screen capture: YouTube)
William Galvin, Secretary of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts speaks on WGBH news, March 18, 2015. (Screen capture: YouTube)

Massachusetts’ secretary of state is wrestling with when to schedule the state’s primary ahead of the November 2018 general election.

The primary is usually held seven weeks before the general election. But for 2018 that would fall on September 18 — and Yom Kippur begins that evening.

According to Massachusetts state law, a primary must be move when it conflicts with a religious holiday, according to The Associated Press.

However, moving the primary a week earlier to September 11 would lead to a clash with the Jewish New Year, Rosh Hashanah.

Secretary of the Commonwealth William Galvin has reached out to the public, including voters and candidates, for advice on how to handle the 2018 primary in light of the restrictions of the Jewish holidays.

He will hold a public meeting in Boston on January 2, 2018 on the issue, and also is accepting comments in writing, according to the AP.

Many Jews refrain from writing or travelling in vehicles on Jewish holidays, so may not be able to vote on those dates.

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