How’s the turnout where YOU are?

Note how empty my polling place was this morning at 10:50 a.m. Of course, this wasn’t exactly morning rush hour, and it was before the busy lunch hour, but still. Take a look at the pictures back here to see what it looked like on Election Day 2008 at the Quail Hollow precinct. In a big-turnout election, it would have taken me an hour of standing in the queue outside before I got to the doorway where I took the picture above.

But the poll workers said this was good turnout for a state primary. How good was it? At 10:55, when I left, there had been 218 voters in the Republican primary, and 31 (including me) choosing a Democratic ballot (for which I felt like I had to mutter an excuse along the lines of “I’m just fed up with those Republicans this year” — like they cared or something).

10 thoughts on “How’s the turnout where YOU are?

  1. The Southwell Literary Society

    Off subject, sorta. One of many interesting and often unappreciated blogs is the dogwood dell.

    Saturday, June 05, 2010
    Lee Atwater Type Ploy?

    Nikki Haley has been commanding the state gubernatorial news ever since the open declaration from Will Folks a couple of weeks ago. Then this past week, we learned that Andre Bauer fired one of his staffers, Larry Marchant, for making a similar claim as Folks. All this attention has commanded the media and the public to focus on Haley instead of the other GOP gubernatorial candidates.

    The news was all too strange and some wondered about the motives of Will Folks. Though he has been downgraded with the “blogger” pejorative, he is still a political consultant for many within South Carolina. So ever since he released this story, I had to ask, “Is this a Lee Atwater type ploy?”

    Many here in South Carolina are familiar with Lee Atwater who started his political career in the Palmetto State. Atwater is best known as being a controversial operative and advisor during the 1980s, especially during the 1988 U.S Presidential race. To help George H. W. Bush win the election, he released a number of questionable media stories that helped Bush overcame a 17-point deficit in midsummer polls to win 40 states and become U.S. President.

    So knowing the history of South Carolina’s “dirty politics” and seeing this latest story regarding Nikki Haley and Will Folks, I continually ask this question:

    If the stories are 100% false – then why isn’t Haley filing a defamation of character suit, demand the removal content from his website, and require a public apology from Will Folks?

    One theory: Maybe Will Folks, the self-confessed Nikki Haley supporter, created a story with Haley’s approval, to have the public side with the candidate. He has yet released any real proof showing his statements are true and his hiring of attorneys may be a façade to the voters. Haley has yet filed any known lawsuits and just dismisses the charges.

    Since the story broke, Nikki Haley made a huge jump in the polls and currently has 39% of the Republican constituency for the primary. The other three GOP candidates are hovering in the teens. She made a 9-point gain after the Will Folk’s statement and before the Larry Marchant/Jake Knotts remarks.

    Part of this jump is the constant statewide and national attention the story is having. It is also improving her chances in winning the primary race. Tom Jensen, director of Public Policy Polling of Raleigh, N.C., said polls indicated Mrs. Haley would win Tuesday’s vote.

    The result of a Haley win will make me wonder if Folks pulled an Atwater-type ploy. All I can say is that the actions, or lack there of, makes me wonder.

    Posted by Dogwood Dell at 9:00:00 AM 0 Reader(s) Remarks

  2. bud

    Better than 7 to 1 in favor of the GOP. Wow. I can’t for the life of me understand what the attraction of the Republican party is. Seems like they’ve been in charge and we still rank near the bottom in everything.

  3. Ralph Hightower

    Well, with the Republican candidates for governor promising to “reform Washington, end bailouts, and cut the Federal budget”, I’m with you.

  4. Wally Altman

    At about 7:15 AM, I had to wait in line about a minute and a half rather than being able to walk up to the table immediately. For a non-Presidential primary election, I consider that a sign of a good turnout.

  5. Juan Caruso

    Brad, we know you like Vinceent Sheheen, the affable attorney.

    If I am not mistaken, however, you lived in S.C. during times when all of our U.S. senators, our governor, lieutenant gov., AG, Sec. of Education and state supreme court judges were all attorneys, and usually Democrats.

    During such terms was the state’s national stature improving other than as a tourist destination?

    Were the incumbents ever without moral or ethical lapses? Was a solid foundation laid for significant, lasting reforms in education.

    Did SC spending exceed budget? Just some responsible thoughts from one independent to another.

  6. Susan

    I just went and voted @ Kilbourne Park Baptist Church, and there were a few people there — at 2:30, it looked from the sign-in sheets like about 40-50 people had voted (both parties combined). There were a few elderly folks standing around shooting the breeze, and a few folks voting in Ward 25. (I’m in Ward 24, the smaller ward, and it was just me voting while I was there).

  7. Brad

    Well, Juan, a number of points:

    First, I don’t remember a time when it was all lawyers. Seems to me the proportion of lawyers in elective office has been relatively steady during my career, although I haven’t made a study of it. There will always be a lot of lawyers running for the legislature because it’s one of the few occupations in which a person can support himself and his family and have the time flexibility to serve.

    And while you don’t exactly ask this question, I will answer that I am NOT among those people who think lawyers serving as lawmakers is a bad thing. In fact, in general, the lawyers in a legislative body tend to be more knowledgable and competent that the average nonlawyer representative. That’s not absolute; it’s just the tendency. And good Lord, I HOPE the judges were all lawyers.

    I will say that in those days (and I’m guessing you’re referring to the days when Democrats ran the state) South Carolina was not the butt of the Daily Show and other comedy venues the way it is today. Aside from Fritz Hollings saying outrageous things and the ever-colorful Strom Thurmond, we offered little entertainment value.

    I chalk a lot of that up to the advent of partisan politics. Republicans today like to decry the days of “one-party politics,” but what those days really were were the days of “no-party politics,” and we were better off for it. Since everybody was a Democrat — including the people who today would be Republicans (and sometimes, the very same people) — we didn’t have all this silly partisan bickering and posturing and name-calling. Candidates had to gain support based upon their own virtues or lack thereof, not according to litmus tests. Mind you, I’m talking about days AFTER the litmus test in the Democratic Party was that you be a segregationist. I’m not THAT old. (I came to SC in 1987, right after Carroll Campbell was elected.)

    And yeah, I think the government was better then, and yeah, education was on a sounder footing, with a lot of good education initiatives passed. In those days, the issue among both Democrats and Republicans (such as the GOP governor) was how to improve the schools (which were suffering from the first generation of white flight after integration in 1970). Today, thanks to the likes of Sanford, the debate is about whether to abandon public schools.

    SC spending did not exceed budget, just as it does not now — because the SC constitution requires a balanced budget.

  8. Herb Brasher

    Interesting the number of pastors and theologians in the German parliament. I don’t have the numbers, but I did get to meet one or two when I lived there. I’d be surprised if we have any in Congress, but then I haven’t checked.

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