Early voting turnout for South Carolina primary

COLUMBIA, S.C. (WOLO) – Just weeks ago, Governor Henry McMaster signed into law a bill allowing anyone to cast a ballot without an excuse for the two weeks before election day in the same way they would by going to the polls. 

South Carolina Election Commission Spokesperson Chris Whitmire says early voting was a success despite not having enough time to prepare after the law was passed. He says there were large counties with only one polling location. 

“There wasn’t as many polling locations due to the short notice statewide . . Charleston, Greenville, Lexington, and some other large counties with only one location. I think you definitely will see that change in the future,” says Whitmire. 

The 2020 voting experience where voters got the option to vote absentee due to the pandemic shows when given the opportunity voters prefer early voting, according to Whitmire. He says before the next election day they’ll do a better job at making sure voters know the option is available. 

“We’ll obviously have more time to get the word out about the opportunity. We did a lot in two weeks but there’s only so much you can do,” says Whitmire. 

Whitmire says even with the short notice over 100 thousand people voted early across the state. “We only did six thousand that first day. So I was kind of thinking there should maybe be more than that but by the last day of early voting we did over 21 thousand.”

He believes early voting takes the pressure off election day, it becomes convenient for voters, and it also takes the pressure off poll workers.

“Lifts the weight off that 12 hour period and those polling places where if you have issues there’s just not a lot of time to resolve those,” says Whitmire.  

Categories: Local News, News