After redistricting and chaotic campaigns, New Yorkers head to the polls.
After Brian Hemesath walked out of his polling place in Midtown Manhattan on Tuesday, he admitted that choosing a candidate in the Democratic primary for New York’s 12th Congressional District had weighed on him for weeks.
“It was harder than I expected it to be with the redistricting,” said Mr. Hemesath, 50, a costume designer.
Voters across New York State found themselves in a similar situation as many of them headed to the polls for a second primary contest in two months. Though primaries for statewide races were held in June, a court-ordered redistricting in May pushed elections for legislative races to August. The new map also shuffled candidates and threw some incumbents into unexpectedly competitive races.
Turnout at polling places across the city appeared light on Tuesday morning, perhaps reflecting fatigue from a second primary or the difficulty in drawing voters to the polls in late August. But those who came to cast their ballots acknowledged that the decisions were difficult ones.
In Mr. Hemesath’s district, which includes Midtown and much of Upper Manhattan, the new boundaries placed Representatives Jerrold Nadler and Carolyn B. Maloney, two lawmakers with decades of experience, into one district.
On the Upper West Side, Carl Wisotsky, 73, said he was unhappy about having to make the choice. “It’s a shame that these two are running against each other,” he said. “I’m a Democrat. I’d like the seniority of both these people to remain in Congress.”
A third candidate, Suraj Patel, has argued that voters should use the redistricting as an opportunity for change and elect a fresh candidate to office. Meghan German, 34, said that message had resonated with her.
“I don’t think it’s ageist to say that I think it’s a good time for a younger generation to see our voice in government,” said Ms. German, who works in corporate sales and lives on the Upper West Side.
In Downtown Manhattan and in parts of Brooklyn, voters were choosing from many hopefuls for New York’s 10th District, most of whom do not have congressional experience.
In Brooklyn’s Sunset Park neighborhood, Cherilyn Anderson said she was inclined to vote for candidates who were younger and progressive but “not so progressive that it’s isolating.”
“I feel like overall a commitment to younger points of view is where we need to go,” Ms. Anderson, who is 52, said. She would not share whom she voted for but added that she wanted to see “fresh ideas” and to “have representatives that honor the whole new demographic sway of the electorate.”
In Lower Manhattan, Shampa Bhattacharya, a financial analyst, said she was voting for Daniel S. Goldman, a former prosecutor who was the chief investigator for House Democrats in the first impeachment of Donald J. Trump.
Her concerns included issues such as women’s rights and quality of life, like disruptive construction, homelessness and crime. In the two decades that she has lived in the neighborhood, she said, it has changed drastically.
“Every neighborhood now has $7 million apartments, and there’s no place for businesses,” Ms. Bhattacharya said.