Wednesday, March 13, 2013
It all started with the surprise resignation of U.S. Sen. Jim DeMint.
When DeMint decided to step down from his position in December, South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley chose U.S. Rep. Tim Scott to replace him. The historical appointment of Scott made national headlines – and it also created a coveted opening in the U.S. House of Representatives.
The crucial first step in selecting a replacement for Scott’s First District House seat will take place Tuesday, March 19, when Republican voters will choose from a staggering 16 candidates. Democratic voters have an easier task, as only two candidates will dot that party’s ballot.
The special election marks the first time that photo IDs will be required to vote in South Carolina.
According to the State Election Commission, voters will be asked to show one of the following photo IDs at their polling place: a South Carolina Driver’s License, an ID Card issued by the South Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles, a South Carolina Voter Registration Card with Photo, a Federal Military ID, or a U.S. Passport.
The race to replace Scott has drawn national attention for the Republicans and Democrats alike.
Former Gov. Mark Sanford – who held the First District seat for three terms before becoming governor – is the frontrunner of the crowded GOP field. Sanford is polling ahead of the others, yet some political observers feel that if another candidate can face Sanford in a runoff, the former governor could be vulnerable.
That could be great news for Sen. Larry Grooms of Bonneau, or any number of the other candidates. If no candidate garners over 50 percent of the vote, the two highest finishers will faceoff in a runoff in April.
Elizabeth Colbert-Busch is the favorite to defeat Ben Frasier in the Democratic race. The fact that Colbert-Busch’s brother, Stephen Colbert, is an internationally famous political satirist on the Comedy Channel is another reason the race has made headlines outside of the First District.
Check berkeleyind.com for all of the results on election night.