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Bernie Sanders

FILE - Presidential candidate Bernie Sanders speaks Tuesday, April 12, 2016, at the Oncenter in Syracuse.

The 2020 New York presidential primary will be held Tuesday, April 28 if a bill is approved by the state Legislature. 

Senate Deputy Majority Leader Michael Gianaris introduced the measure to set the presidential primary election for April 28, 2020. 

At least five other states, including Pennsylvania, could hold presidential primary elections on that date. Maryland is the only state that has finalized plans to hold its presidential primaries on April 28. 

"It is important for New York to maximize its influence in the presidential nominating process and this bill does just that," Gianaris, D-Queens, said. "The selected date will increase our state's allotment of delegates based on party rules." 

New York will have 270 delegates up for grabs in its primary election. By selecting the late April date, the state's Democrats will get 25% more delegates at the convention. 

The presidential primary will be the first of three elections in New York next year. The primary for federal and state races will be held Tuesday, June 23, 2020. The general election is Tuesday, Nov. 5, 2020. 

It will be the second election — the first primary — since early voting was adopted in New York. Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed a bill in January making New York the 38th state to allow early voting. 

The nine-day early voting period begins 10 days before Election Day. For the presidential primary, early voting would commence Saturday, April 18 and end Sunday, April 26. 

New York could be an important state in the race for the Democratic nomination. Not only does the state have the second-highest number of delegates, but the later primary date could decide who is the party's nominee for president. 

As of Tuesday, there are more than 20 Democratic candidates for president. The top five contenders are former Vice President Joe Biden, U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders, former South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg, U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren and U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris. 

There are two New Yorkers running for president: New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio and U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand. 

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Online producer Robert Harding can be reached at (315) 282-2220 or robert.harding@lee.net. Follow him on Twitter @robertharding.

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Online producer and politics reporter

I have been The Citizen's online producer and politics reporter since December 2009. I'm the author of the Eye on NY blog and write the weekly Eye on NY column that appears every Sunday in the print edition of The Citizen and online at auburnpub.com.