BRANCHVILLE -— The first test of South Carolina's voter I.D. requirement law goes forward Tuesday when residents living in this tiny Orangeburg County crossroads come out to fill a vacancy on town council.
When polls open at 7 a.m., voters will be required to show one of five forms of photo I.D., including a driver's license, federal military I.D., or U.S. passport, to cast a ballot.
As of 10 a.m. about 30 people have voted. The voting has proceeded smoothly.
Most voters have shown either a S.C. driver's license or a military ID.
No one has been turned away or not shown proper ID. There has been no protest at the or near the precinct.
Branchville has about 430 registered voters.
The South Carolina ACLU, meanwhile, is also making it known that voters can also take part in the election without having to show a photo I.D., if they can illustrate that they faced a “reasonable impediment” to getting one.
The new I.D. law took effect Jan. 1 after a federal court review and after a bitter partisan fight in the Legislature.
Republicans argued the change would curb voter fraud, while Democrats argued there is little evidence of such acts being a problem in the state, and that the law will depress turnout among the elderly and poor.
Other identification options include an S.C. Department of Motor Vehicles-issued I.D., or a S.C. voter card with picture. The candidates on the ballot to fill the council vacancy are Charlene Norris Negron, Sammie Whisenhunt and Luvenia Williams.