COVID-19 brings a call for absentee ballots, and South Carolina might have an answer

Published: Sep. 15, 2020 at 11:49 PM EDT
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AIKEN, S.C. (WRDW/WAGT) - South Carolina as state lawmakers are moving forward with a bill to expand absentee voting in the state -- one the governor says he’ll sign.

With less than 50 days from the election, people in the two-state are changing their voting plans this time around. There isn’t just a push to get people to vote, but also a question of how we vote.

A bill is headed to Gov. Henry McMaster’s desk that would allow everyone to vote absentee if they choose.

Currently, voters have to meet certain requirements and some people in Aiken County hope this bill will become a reality.

“I think that’s a good thing for South Carolina because that will allow everyone the opportunity to vote absentee if they don’t feel comfortable going to the polling booth,” said Bob Brookshire, Aiken County GOP chairman.

Jade Bodiford of Graniteville is due to give birth just days before the election and hopes she can vote absentee.

“I just don’t feel comfortable going around and being around that many people, whether or not I have a newborn, or I’m that far along in my pregnancy,” she said.

But there are others who plan to stick to the old-fashioned way.

“I just don’t trust sending something as important as my vote through mail. I know that lots of people do it with success, however, I just don’t trust it because they’ve lost some of my mail before,” said Jessica Christian, a North Augusta voter.

If this bill goes into effect, one thing’s for sure: the choice will be ours with how we choose to vote.

In Georgia, any person can vote absentee if they choose. The Richmond County Board of Elections says in previous primaries, they counted about a thousand absentee ballots.

In June, that number jumped to more than 30,000.

Edgefield County Board of Elections officials say they expect a large number of absentee ballots if the bill is signed. They’re prepping by adding four new employees to help process those votes

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