South Carolinians are heading to the polls today to choose their statewide officials, members of the U.S. House of Representatives, members of the S.C. House of Representatives, one state senator and hundreds of local leaders.
Palmetto State voters must also decide whether they wish to keep electing state superintendents of education – or turn that authority over to future governors.
For nearly 300,000 South Carolinians, though, these choices have already been made.
According to the very latest calculations from the S.C. Election Commission (SCVotes.org), a record-shattering 298,355 absentee ballots have been issued across the state for the current election cycle. That total is up an astounding 89 percent from the 2014 election, when approximately 157,000 absentee ballots were cast (then a statewide record).
The absentee total could climb even higher as voters have until 7:00 p.m. EST this evening to return their ballots.
Will the surge in early voting suppress turnout at the polls today? That remains to be seen …
A total of 1.26 million South Carolinians – or 43.8 percent of the state’s 2.89 million registered voters – cast ballots four years ago. Of those, 12.4 percent voted absentee.
While impressive, this year’s absentee ballots won’t beat the totals posted in the last two presidential elections – when far more voters show up to the polls …
WANNA SOUND OFF?
Got something you’d like to say in response to one of our stories? Please feel free to submit your own guest column or letter to the editor via-email HERE. Got a tip for us? CLICK HERE. Got a technical question or a glitch to report? CLICK HERE. Want to support what we’re doing? SUBSCRIBE HERE.