South Carolina Lt. Gov. Kevin Bryant called Monday for changing voter-registration rules to protect the “integrity” of the state’s elections.
Bryant, a pharmacist from Anderson who is running for governor, wants South Carolina voters to register by party affiliation. Under his proposal, voters then would be restricted to casting ballots in their identified party’s primary.
Primaries in the state have been open to all voters for decades. The state’s voter-registration laws do not include any party-affiliation requirement.
Bryant said that 60,000 voters who cast ballots in South Carolina’s 2016 Democratic Party presidential primary took part months later in the Republican primary for state elections.
“I have no business voting in a Democratic primary. I am a Republican,” Bryant said during a speech to members of the Greenville Chamber of Commerce.
The change that he is seeking is part of a seven-point campaign platform that Bryant describes as a “Contract with South Carolina.” He discussed several of the ideas during his appearance Monday.