Well, I voted. Did you? If so, how did it go?

My polling place this morning. And no, I didn't throw Lindsey's sign to the ground. But I thought it interesting that someone had.

My polling place this morning. And no, I didn’t throw Lindsey’s sign to the ground. But I thought it interesting that someone had.

Well, that was easy enough. No lines, everybody wearing masks, walk right in and out. (I mean, as in and out as is possible when you’re as obsessively careful as I am about voting.)

Did you vote today? If so, how did it go for you?

As for how I voted: Well, y’all know that my priority was voting “NO” to that grossly devious effort by the state Republican Party to shut nonpartisans out of the electoral process. I did so, just as firmly and adamantly as my long cotton swab thingy would let me. It’s a wonder I didn’t break the stick.

By the way, I enjoyed Eva Moore’s take on the swabs:

Actually, they had me throw mine away before scanning my completed ballot. Seems to me we missed a big opportunity today. We could have had everyone test themselves for COVID with those after voting.

Anyway, so I voted “no” on that, and on the other, less consequential, “advisory question.” I don’t expect my vote to make the difference. It will probably pass, because of the shamefully deceptive way it is worded. The people who will see that question and fail to understand it far exceed the number I can reach (and persuade) with my blog, and for that matter, that Cindi and the Post and Courier can reach. We can only do so much, when parties stoop to be this sleazy.

Ditto with my votes against Lindsey Graham and Joe Wilson. I went for Joe Reynolds and Michael Bishop — both of whom I believe would do better jobs than the incumbents, if they had a chance. But the real chance — as difficult as that, too, will be — will come in November, when both incumbents have credible Democratic opposition.

I did not vote for either of the guys vying to oppose my senator, Nikki Setzer, nor in the sheriff race. I tried last night, but could not find enough information to be sure which way to go on sheriff. The challenger’s efforts to explain his candidacy were so lame that I had a slight tendency to vote for the incumbent, but I found so little information on him that I couldn’t be confident about it. (He probably has one, but I had trouble even finding a campaign website for Sheriff Koon.)

And I’m not about to ever fall into the “name recognition” fallacy of voting for somebody just because I’ve heard of him. That would be insupportable. I always have reasons — as imperfect as they may be — to vote the way I do.

Anyway, how’d it go for you? I mean, if you voted today. And even if you voted absentee like so many — how did that go?

29 thoughts on “Well, I voted. Did you? If so, how did it go?

  1. Brad Warthen Post author

    Oh, and in case you wondered, “If Brad thinks it’s nuts to try to return to normal now, why did he go vote?,” I’m happy to explain.

    I’m not holed up in a closet here at home. I do occasionally go to the grocery or Walmart or Lowe’s. I don’t go out more than once or twice a week, and when I do, I take all precautions — a mask, lots of hand-washing, etc.

    I surmised that going to vote would be LESS risky than doing that — fewer people, more precautions by everyone involved. And I was right. The chance I took was far, far less than I take when I go to Food Lion.

    Anyway, that’s why I did it.

  2. Larry Slaughter

    Coincidentally there is COVID drive through testing at Crossroads Middle School today and that is also the temporary polling place for my precinct. Voting probably took 5 minutes. I’m almost an hour and a half and counting in the COVID line. Indigestion from voting in the first Republican primary in my life may last all day.

  3. Barry

    Voted about 11:30. My precinct is typically. about 70% republican. We chose the Democrat primary this time.

    My wife and I were 72 and 73 on the Democrat list. The guy behind us also voted Democrat. I glanced at the Republican list. There were 82 signatures. I was very surprised at how even it was.

    1. Brad Warthen Post author

      It must be nice to vote somewhere where you have a choice — a choice the S.C. GOP wants to take away from you, by the way.

      I’m not sure what I’d do if we had a Democratic primary here. I’d want to, for instance, vote for someone like Rhodes Bailey for Senate — if I were in that district. But I see voting against what the GOP is trying to do as being so important…

      1. Brad Warthen Post author

        Of course, as y’all know, I think every one of us should have the right to vote in BOTH primaries, on the same day.

        That’s not going to happen, though, so I’ll spend my energy fighting against things going in the OPPOSITE direction, taking away the right we have to choose one or the other…

  4. bud

    The fall election is far too important to base a voting decision on individual merit. This is about which party will govern going forward. It is completely irresponsible to vote for a Republican based on any criteria other than their prospects for losing in November. The GOP is well on its way to making this country a Kleptocracy. To remain a member of the Republican party now is to support Trumpism. Because that’s the direction the country is heading under GOP rule. People like Brad need to wake up and see that Trump is not the totality of the problem. The fundamental problem is the entire Republican party. If election time rolls around and you’re not comfortable with the Democrat then by all means vote Green or Libertarian. Many Bernie supporters who are just not comfortable with Biden are doing just that. (I think that’s a mistake but I do understand their reasoning. Joe Biden really is awful.) But for folks who actually enthusiastically vote FOR any Republican shame on you. YOU are a part of the problem.

    1. Brad Warthen Post author

      Oh, I’m fully awake, bud. Which is why, if you’re voting in a GOP primary and you think a Republican is going to get elected no matter what you do, you have a profound responsibility to pick the best, or least bad, Republican you possibly can.

      To do anything else is grossly irresponsible.

      Oh, and that goes ditto for any Bernie supporters who vote for anyone but Joe. I’ll make NO excuses for them saying “I understand their reasoning.”

      There is no excuse whatsoever to vote for anyone but the one candidate who can beat Trump.

      A vote for a Green or Libertarian candidate for president is a vote for Trump, period.

  5. Randle

    We voted absentee several weeks ago in the Democratic Primary. We are in District 75, and voted for Rhodes Bailey. Got an alert from his campaign today stating that his name was missing on some ballots in consolidated polling places, with instructions on how to proceed. I wonder if Richland County is ever going to run a competent election again.

    1. Brad Warthen Post author

      Doesn’t look like it. As long as we continue to allow special purpose districts, that probably won’t get better.

      Trouble is, most voters don’t understand that the problem with their election apparatus, and their parks commission, and so many other things, is that they are SPDs — despite our trying for decades at The State to explain it. So voters don’t get stirred up against SPDs, and so lawmakers don’t do anything about it…

  6. Bryan Caskey

    Voted this morning before going into work. Let me again say I really, really dislike how you have to publicly declare whether you want a Democratic or Republican ballot. I don’t want the person behind me knowing what ballot I’m asking for, and I don’t think want to see how many people have voted in either primary.

    It’s not a secret ballot, it’s like a semi-secret ballot. Harrumph.

    1. Brad Warthen Post author

      And Lindsey, just FYI since you’re confused, it stops somewhere between a guy who built his political career on the advocacy of lynching, and the Father of our Country.

      I hope that’s helpful…

      1. Brad Warthen Post author

        As y’all probably know, I’ve always hated slippery slope arguments.

        The answer to the idiotic question, “Where does it stop?” is almost always, “Wherever we want it to stop.”

        I particularly hate to see it used in such an idiotic and immoral cause as defending Ben Tillman. Of course, to Lindsey this isn’t about Tillman. It’s about playing to the racists who back his buddy…

        1. Brad Warthen Post author

          I’ve seldom seen a man fall so low.

          Used to be, if you referred to Lindsey Graham’s “buddy,” you meant John McCain, or Joe Lieberman.

          Now, what it means is so disgusting it hardly bears thinking about…

          1. Barry

            I’ve run across Lindsey a few times over the years in Oconee County. I hope I get the chance again to tell him How disgusting a human he really is….,

  7. Doug T

    Be careful Bud. Don’t get Brad started on that “vote the person not the party“ thing.

    I do agree with Bud. I would not vote GOP no matter who was running. You’re a Dem or a GOP for a reason.

    1. bud

      Brad cut his political teeth in an era when we actually had issue oriented debate over things like how many aircraft carriers we needed or the top marginal income tax rate. As such it was reasonable to evaluate candidates at the margins. Parties were not so polarized. We actually had liberal Republicans! Imagine that.Now you don’t ever see an ad or yard sign that merely says Joe Blow Republican for x. Instead it’s Joe Blow CONSERVATIVE, pro life in the womb, pro assault rifle proliferation, pro tax cuts for billionaires for x. But folks like Brad haven’t caught up to the reality that todays GOP is really nothing but a cult of personality like the Moonies, or the Jim Jones Church. Hence we have posts that show extreme concern for something as trivial as a minor ballot initiative. Times have changed. Some people just haven’t caught on to the change.

  8. Brad Warthen Post author

    Hey, does anyone know what’s going on down in Charleston?

    Surely that’s not Republicans turning out for the 1st Congressional District? If not, though, what?

    Or are we seeing crowds like that in the Midlands? I don’t think so.

    If that IS congressional, it would be hard to imagine from a Midlands perspective. The 2nd and 6th districts have been drawn to be SO secure for the incumbent Republican and Democrat for SO long, that a competitive race is really hard to imagine.

    I mean, I’m hopeful for Adair Boroughs going against Joe Wilson in the fall, but it seems like Joe still has a huge advantage, right?

    1. Brad Warthen Post author

      That certainly seems to contradict what the Post and Courier is reporting, which is that “Charleston-area voters trickled into polling places…”

    2. Brad Warthen Post author

      Oh, never mind. We DO have similar things happening in the Midlands:

      Of course, the problems in Richland County, I’m hearing, mostly have to do with the legendary incompetence of the Richland County Election Commission…

      … another Special Purpose District, boys and girls, brought to you by your good friends in the South Carolina General Assembly!…

  9. Scout

    I voted around 4:30 with no issues. My polling place was combined with a neighboring precinct in a different location but it wasn’t crowded and took about 10 minutes total. My husband went about 6:30 and had a little longer line but still not more than 20-30 minutes.

  10. Mark Stewart

    I’m with Bryan on this one, between having to yell around the Covid shield, signing the blue or the red signature list and receiving a red or blue ticket with the ballot it was just a ridiculous clown show of partisanship at the polling place.

    The icing on the cake this time was the “Republican” poll worker grabbed my ballot out of the voting machine post-vote and looked at it while we stepped over to the vote counter container. What a hack.

    It did seem like more people voted Democrat, proportionally, than Republican in my precinct. There might have been more meaningful votes on that ballot, but I enjoyed voting against Graham and against the GOP.

    1. Brad Warthen Post author

      Your ballot — and your choice of which primary to vote in — should be private. It’s not anything I’ve ever worried about — everybody knows what I think, and how I’m voting — but I can see it being important to other people.

      I don’t know any way to do that, though, unless they just give you both ballots. As you know, I think we should all be able to vote in BOTH primaries, every time — that would have a wonderful effect on pulling our country back from extremes — but that won’t happen. Maybe they could give you access to both, but once you vote in one, the machine could deny you access to the other.

      I don’t know…

      1. Bryan Caskey

        Either one of those would be better than the status quo, with the choice of voting in both primaries being the preferred option.

  11. Mottes' Mom

    Over in the lake district, we managed a steady flow. Its been quite while since I worked a 14 hour day, but, though exhausting, its good to see folks come out and do their democratic duty. I really like seeing the mix in our community, the working class, the moms and dads who bring their kids in with them, the health care folks in scrubs. Give one a sense of hope.

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