The Daily Gamecock

How to register to vote absentee, early, during midterm season

South Carolinians will be able to vote for their governor and decide who holds one of S.C.'s two senate seats. If you are not able to vote on Nov. 8 during the midterm elections, you have the option of getting an absentee ballot or going in for early voting. 

Here's how to get yourself set up for each. 

How to absentee vote

One is eligible to vote by absentee if they have employment obligations, physical disabilities or any sickness that prevents them from voting during early voting hours for the duration of the early voting period. If anyone has also been unfortunately admitted to a hospital as an emergency patient on the day of the election or within a four-day period before the election, they can absentee vote. 

People can also vote in this manner if they're going to be absent from the county of residence during early voting and the day of voting.

You can apply for absentee voting by submitting your request by calling, visiting or sending a request by U.S. mail to your county voter registration office

In South Carolina, you cannot register for an absentee ballot online, you have to call or go to your county voter registration office to request an absentee ballot, You will then receive an application by mail. When filling out your application for an absentee ballot, have your date of birth and the last four digits of your Social Security Number. 

Make sure that you return the application by U.S. mail or personal delivery to your county voter registration office before 5 p.m. on Oct. 28. After applying, you will receive your ballot through mail. The ballot needs to submitted to the office before 7pm on November 8th. Remember to bring your Photo I.D. when returning the ballot return envelope. 

How to vote early

Any registered voter can vote early by showing up at one of the early voting centers provided by your district. You can check where the early voting centers are by going to the South Carolina Election Commission website and selecting your county and reading the list of places available for early voting. 

The early voting period is from Oct. 24 to Nov. 5. While you might not need a voter registration card when voting in S.C., make sure to bring your Photo ID when checking in to vote.

By following these instructions, your voting process will be easy and smooth. It may seem like there is extra work involved, but it is important that you are exercising your right as a citizen of the United States and are participating in choosing your leaders. 

It is also important to know which candidates are running in your district, this can be done by going to the same website mentioned earlier and entering your personal information. This will give you the opportunity to do your research on the candidates running and figure out who you want to vote for.


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