Today’s news:

Two candidates removed from SE Queens ballots

Two political hopefuls from southeast Queens vying for City Council seats were knocked off the ballot last week by the city Board of Elections.

James Blake, a Democratic district leader in Laurelton, was removed from his bid to face Councilman James Sanders Jr. (D-Laurelton), while lawyer Stephen Jackson was taken out of the race against Councilman Leroy Comrie (D-St. Albans), according to Board of Elections documents.

Candidates must file designating petitions with the board to make the ballot. Those running on the major party lines, such as Republican or Democratic, need 900 signatures.

A Board of Elections spokesman said signatures can be declared invalid for a variety of reasons, including illegible writing, incomplete information, using pencil and more.

Other candidates can challenge a rival’s petition, prompting the Board of Elections to examine each signature.

Blake, who came in second behind Sanders in the 2001 Council race, was eliminated from this year’s primary race, leaving the councilman to face Republican candidate Everly Brown.

Jackson’s removal from the Council District 27 race pits Comrie against fellow Democrat Helen Cooper-Gregory.

Both Blake and Jackson can appeal the board’s decision through legal channels. Neither was available for comment.

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