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Voters Find Easy Transition to New Paper-Based Voting System

The November 5 elections were the first widespread use of the new voting system

COLUMBIA, S.C. (November 6, 2019) – Yesterday, thousands of voters in the more than 180 local elections in 40 counties cast their ballots on South Carolina’s new paper-based voting system. This was the first widespread use of the new system, and the S.C. State Election Commission is pleased to report the transition was a success. 

“Election officials across the state have worked tirelessly over the past four months implementing the new system, attending training and making preparations,” said Marci Andino, executive director of the State Election Commission. “Yesterday’s successful election is a testament to their hard work. This was a tremendous opportunity for both voters and election officials to make sure we’re ready for the first statewide elections on the new system in 2020.”

Earlier this year, the state of South Carolina announced the award of a contract for a new statewide voting system. The new paper-based system replaced the state’s aging paperless system that had been in place since 2004. The new voting system provides voters with the familiarity of a touchscreen combined with the security of a paper ballot. “The system is more secure than ever, it is accessible to all voters and will serve the citizens of South Carolina for many years to come,” Andino said.

“We were thrilled with the voting process yesterday and credit our poll managers for their time training on the new system and their hard work on election day,” said Katy Smith, director of the Anderson County Board of Voter Registration and Elections and president of the S.C. Association of Registration and Election Officials. “Voters found the new system easy to use, and they liked the combination of the touchscreen and the security that the paper ballot provides.”

The new voting systems were first used in local elections in October in Aiken and York counties. The system will be used statewide for the first time for the Democratic Presidential Preference Primary on February 29, 2020.

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