Polls close on topsy-turvy SC primary - FOX Carolina 21

Polls close on topsy-turvy SC primary

Posted: Updated:
GREENVILLE, SC (AP/FOX Carolina) -

South Carolina voters went to the polls Tuesday to select Republican and Democratic candidates for Congress, the Statehouse and local offices.

South Carolina State Election Commission spokesman Chris Whitmire said he's gotten reports from across the state of light to very light turnouts. He said he has gotten a report one voter did not find a certain candidate on his ballot, but the confusion arose because of redistricting and no irregularities occurred.

FOX Carolina spoke with a Greenville County voter who said her decision to vote was affected by the chaos surrounding the primary.

"I almost didn't come and vote today because of that," Betti Woodruff said. "I kind of felt there would be a court case that would throw this election out and have another one. Just in case, I decided to come vote."

Many throughout the state have fewer candidates and races to vote on after nearly 250 candidates were flung from ballots in the past month.

The South Carolina Supreme Court removed more than 200 candidates from consideration because of improper paperwork.

A flurry of legal actions tried to restore those candidates' names, and most of them failed. 

A federal lawsuit filed by five former candidates against the South Carolina Election Commission after they were thrown off the ballots last week was rejected by a panel of judges Monday afternoon.

Ann Smith, Tommie Reece, John Pettigrew, Bob Shirley and Robert Tinsley were the candidates named in the lawsuit filed in the United State District Court in Columbia. They hoped to get their names back on the ballots or to have Tuesday's primary put on hold.

Officials said more than 430,000 registered voters will have no one to vote for after the high court ruled that candidates who failed to file the paperwork properly weren't eligible for the election and wouldn't be counted.

Polls opened at 7 a.m. and closed at 7 p.m.

In the Upstate county council races, Scott Cain won the Newberry County Council District 1 GOP race with 53.2 percent of the votes. In Union County, Randall Hanvey won the District 5 Democratic race with 54.2 percent of the votes.

In Greenwood County with 96 percent of precincts reporting, Sonny Cox won the Greenwood County Coroner race and Steve Brown won the County Council District 5 GOP race.

In the race for the State House, Ed Harris won the District 3 GOP race, David Hiott won the District 4 GOP race, and Donna Wood won the District 37 GOP race.

It looks like several races will have to be determined by run-offs. In Greenwood County, Chastity Sheek and Angie Woodhurst are neck-and-neck with 96 percent of precincts reporting.

Stay with FOX Carolina and foxcarolina.com for more results.

Copyright 2012 FOX Carolina (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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