[image-1] It’s primary election day in South Carolina! That means it’s time to tuck away all the noise you’ve been hearing for the past few months and make a wise, sound decision at the ballot box.

The polls will open at 7 a.m., and you will be guaranteed a ballot if you’re standing in line by 7 p.m. when the polls close.

Find your polling place by plugging in your name, date of birth, and county at on the state election commission website. Ballots will vary depending on your location (a.k.a. your county and congressional/state districts) and on the party primary you choose to vote in (Democratic or Republican).

Also at SCvotes.org, you can get a peek at your sample ballot before you show up to your polling place.

Seats in the state legislature and U.S. Congress are up for grabs depending on where you live. In Charleston, Republican U.S. Rep. Mark Sanford is running for re-election in the 1st Congressional District against Republicans Katie Arrington and Dimitri Cherny. Democrats Joe Cunningham and Toby Smith are also battling for their party’s nomination.

Attorney General Alan Wilson will face two Republican challengers: William Herlong and Todd Atwater. There is no Democratic primary for this race.

Of course, the gubernatorial primary is the race everyone will be talking about.

Gov. Henry McMaster, who was sworn in as governor last year after Nikki Haley left for the United Nations at the behest of President Trump, will defend his seat against Mt. Pleasant attorney Catherine Templeton, Greenville businessman John Warren, Lt. Gov. Kevin Bryant, and former Lt. Gov. Yancey McGill.
[content-1] On the Democratic side, state Rep. James Smith, Charleston businessman Phil Noble, and Florence attorney Marguerite Willis are duking it to run against the Republican candidate come November.

There’ a good chance that both races will lead to run-offs on June 26. Candidates need more than 50 percent of the vote to avoid the head-to-head runoff.
[content-2] Democrats and Republicans will also be asked different ballot questions. If you plan on voting on a Democratic ballot, be prepared to tackle the following:

  1. Do you support passing a state law allowing doctors to prescribe medical marijuana to patients?
  2. Do you support passing a state law requiring the governor of South Carolina to accept all federal revenues offered to support Medicaid and Medicaid expansion efforts in the state?

[content-3] If you plan on voting on a Republican ballot, get ready for these:

  1. Do you believe that voters should have the option to choose to affiliate with a political party when they register to vote or change their voter registration in South Carolina?
  2. Do you believe that South Carolina’s tax code should be brought into conformity with the new Trump tax cuts in the federal tax code for maximum simplification and to lower the overall tax burden on South Carolina taxpayers and businesses?

South Carolina is an open primary state, meaning you don’t have to be a registered member of a party to vote in it’s primary. You do, however, have to stick to that party if you choose to vote in the runoffs on June 26. Also—in case you thought you could be slick—you can only vote in ONE primary, Democrat or Republican.


  • Bring your photo ID if you have one. That includes your S.C. Driver’s License, a U.S. Passport, a S.C. DMV ID card, or a federal military ID. If you don’t have photo ID, you may still cast a provisional ballot after signing an affidavit explaining why you could not obtain a valid photo ID if you bring your voter registration card. If you don’t have a voter registration card or a photo ID, you may cast a provisional ballot that will only count if you show your photo ID to the election commission by Thursday.
  • Children under 18 may accompany voters in the booth

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