DMV voter registration issues have been happening for years

The Greenville County elections director says there have been problems since ‘Motor Voter” passed in 1993
Published: Nov. 11, 2022 at 6:46 PM EST
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GREENVILLE, S.C. (FOX Carolina) - Instead of beaming with civic pride, some Greenville County residents walked away from the polls feeling frustrated.

They thought they had registered to vote at the DMV, but discovered that wasn’t the case at their precinct. So they either had to go back to their old voting site or wait in line to change their address at County Square.

Several voters contacted FOX Carolina News saying they experienced this setback. Several poll workers reached out, too, saying they noticed more people having this same issue than in previous years. Poll worker Charlotte Wood said saw it firsthand.

“They felt frustrated, probably disappointed,” she said. “But that was only at one precinct and there’s about 150 precincts in Greenville County.”

Greenville County elections and voter registration director Conway Belangia said this is a problem they’ve had for years.

“This has been happening every election since we instituted ‘Motor Voter,’” Belangia said.

Also known as the National Voter Registration Act of 1993, ‘Motor Voter” is a federal law that says DMVs must give people the option to simultaneously register to vote when they apply for a license.

We reached out to SCDMV officials and they told FOX Carolina News a weekly report is sent to the South Carolina Elections Commission with voter registration info.

But sometimes it never makes it back to the county elections department.

Both Belangia and Chris Whitmire, a spokesperson for the South Carolina Election Commission, tell us they are looking for solutions.

“We are trying to work through all the issues with DMV to improve that address change process,” Belangia said.

Whitmire told FOX Carolina News in an email his department continues to work with DMV to institute changes that will ensure that county election officials receive all DMV updates.”

There’s no way to know how many people were impacted on Tuesday, but Conway said they corrected 1,100-hundred, which is less than 1% of the total people who voted.

“We’re talking a small number of people, but to every voter it’s important,” he said.

Belangia and Whitmire said the best thing a voter can do in the meantime is to check their registration themselves. You can do this at or by calling your county’s election office.

FOX Carolina News will continue to investigate this issue.