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2024

Democratic Presidential Primary Voter Registration Deadline Approaching

South Carolina Democrats need to act fast if they want to keep “ridin’ with Biden.”

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Voters looking to cast their ballots in the 2024 “First in the Nation” Democratic presidential primary in South Carolina need to act fast. A key deadline is looming this week ahead of the February 3, 2024 election – which is expected to be a cakewalk for incumbent U.S. president Joe Biden.

According to a release from the S.C. Election Commission (SCVotes.gov), South Carolinians looking to vote in the 2024 Democratic race must register no later than this Thursday – January 4, 2024. The deadline to register to vote in the upcoming “First in the South” Republican presidential primary is not until January 25, 2024 – three weeks from today.

According to election officials, there are several ways to register …

Individuals already registered are urged to check their registration online to make sure their address is up to date. For example, if a resident has “moved from one county to another,” they must register in their new county by the deadline to be eligible to vote. Those who have moved within their county – or recently changed their name – should update that information prior to the February 3, 2024 election in order to “help ensure a smoother voting process.”

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RELATED | ELECTION REFORMS SCHEDULE RALLY

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Biden saw his flailing candidacy resurrected four years ago in the Palmetto State – notching a decisive victory after abysmal showings in Iowa and New Hampshire. This go-round, Biden rewarded South Carolina by bumping it ahead of the Granite State on the Democratic calendar.

The problem? New Hampshire didn’t cooperative, choosing to schedule its Democratic primary date for January 23, 2024 – twelve days ahead of South Carolina’s primary election.

Accordingly, Biden’s name will not appear on the “unsanctioned” New Hampshire ballot, meaning his supporters must write in his name if they want to vote for him. Also, the winner of the Granite State Democratic primary will not collect any delegates after the Democratic National Committee (DNC) vowed to withhold them upon releasing its revised schedule in December 2022.

Gotta love a rigged process, right?

Despite these sanctions, one South Carolina Democratic operative is still accusing Granite Staters of being racist – or at the very least of being “disrespectful” to black voters.

“It was Joe Biden’s decision to make South Carolina first,” Antjuan Seawright told Boston-based WBUR FM last fall. “To buck that shows not only disrespect to black voters — the most loyal and dedicated voter block in a generation — but also to the process.”

Biden is one of three names on the South Carolina Democratic ballot, joining U.S. congressman Dean Phillips of Minnesota and spiritual guru/ self-help author Marianne Williamson. Liberal pundit Cenk Uygur, host of The Young Turks, was disqualified from the ballot due to the fact he was not born in the United States.

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Biden won 48.65 percent of the South Carolina vote in 2020 – garnering 262,366 ballots. That was more than double the total received by socialist U.S. senator Bernie Sanders, who drew just 19.77 percent of the vote (106,605 ballots). All told, 540,062 voters participated in the Democratic primary last time – or 16.36 percent of the state’s 3.3 million registered voters at the time.

That total barely eclipsed the former Democratic record of 532,468 ballots cast in 2008 – when there were nearly a million fewer registered voters in South Carolina. As for Republicans, they drew a record 740,881 voters to their presidential primary in 2016, when Donald Trump won 32.5 percent of the vote (240,882 ballots) compared to U.S. senator Marco Rubio’s 22.48 percent support (166,565 ballots) and U.S. senator Ted Cruz‘s 22.33 percent support (165,417 ballots)

Former governor Nikki Haley – Trump’s top rival in the current primary – endorsed Rubio in that election.

South Carolina Republicans did not hold an election last cycle – controversially canceling their 2020 primary as a sop to Trump. With one exception, the winner of the South Carolina presidential primary has always gone on to capture their party’s nomination. On the Democratic side, Palmetto State voters have picked the past three nominees – Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and Biden.

Anyway, we would encourage anyone looking to vote in next month’s Democratic primary to make arrangements now. Also, be on the lookout for a similar announcement ahead of the January 25, 2024 deadline for the GOP presidential primary – scheduled for Saturday, February 24, 2024.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR …

(Travis Bell Photography)

Will Folks is the founding editor of the news outlet you are currently reading. Prior to founding FITSNews, he served as press secretary to the governor of South Carolina and before that he was a bass guitarist and dive bar bouncer. He lives in the Midlands region of the state with his wife and eight children.

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