South Carolina remains a solidly red state, but the Charleston metro area is speckled with blue.

A precinct-by-precinct analysis by The Post and Courier of Tuesday's historic presidential election sheds light on how your neighbors voted.

In Berkeley and Dorchester counties, they voted much like they did in 2004, handing victories to Sen. John McCain in every precinct that President Bush won on his way to a second term in the White House.

President-elect Barack Obama attracted more votes in Berkeley and Dorchester than the Democratic candidate in 2004, Sen. John Kerry; but McCain easily carried both counties and actually captured one more precinct than Bush won four years ago, putting Shulerville in rural Berkeley in the red column.

Charleston was an entirely different story.

Obama handily flipped Charleston County from red to blue, winning or tying half the precincts and swamping McCain by capturing two-thirds of the absentee ballots, which accounted for nearly a third of the Obama votes in the county.

Bush won Charleston County in 2004 with 52 percent of the vote. Unofficial results show Obama taking Charleston County with nearly 54 percent of the vote to McCain's 45 percent.

The strongest pockets of support for Obama were in peninsular Charleston and North Charleston, where he netted 73 percent and 69 percent of the vote, respectively. Obama also beat McCain in rural areas in Charleston and Dorchester counties.

McCain found his strongest support in Hanahan, where he netted 71 percent of the vote, and on Daniel Island, where he got 67 percent.

And McCain also fared well in Mount Pleasant and on Charleston County's barrier islands, such as Sullivan's, Kiawah, Folly, Seabrook and the Isle of Palms, where he got 63 percent.

Kiawah, Seabrook and the Isle of Palms precincts are GOP strongholds, where at least 70 percent of the voters are 45 or older and at least two-thirds voted in the GOP presidential primary earlier this year.

The turnout Tuesday, which does not include absentee ballots, ranged from a high of 68 percent in the St. George area and 67 percent in rural Berkeley County to a low of 53 percent in North Charleston and 54 percent in Moncks Corner. Turnout also was lighter (55 percent) in predominantly black precincts than in predominantly white ones, which had a 61 percent turnout rate.

However, those numbers don't reflect the vast numbers of people who voted absentee. In Charleston County alone, 39,111 voted absentee — almost 20 percent of all registered voters — and they were overwhelmingly Democratic: 74 percent favored Obama.

Charleston redrew some of its precincts between the 2004 and 2008 presidential elections, so direct comparisons are difficult, but Kerry won 78 of 173 precincts in 2004, while Obama won 89 of 182 this year.

Two precincts — James Island 6 (votes at James Island Charter High) and James Island 20 (votes at Murray Lasaine Elementary) — split evenly between Obama and McCain.

But Obama ran much stronger in the Lowcountry than Kerry. Obama won 47 percent of the tri-county vote Tuesday, compared to 43 percent by Kerry.

There was a notable racial component to the voting. Precincts where at least 75 percent of those registered were black went for Obama by a 9-1 ratio. Not a single one went for McCain.

Precincts that are at least 75 percent white supported McCain 65-35, and not a single one of them went for Obama.

Precincts with a disproportionate number of young voters favored Obama by 66-34, while precincts with large numbers of senior citizens favored McCain by nearly the same edge, 63-37.

Obama also ran well in the three Lowcountry precincts where at least two-thirds of all registered voters were women, receiving 77 percent of the vote in those three precincts.