“Zombies” are not voting in South Carolina, the state’s top election official said Wednesday, disputing claims by another state official that more than 950 dead voters have cast ballots in S.C. elections. Marci Andino, director of the S.C. State Election Commission, testified before a House panel that some of the voters the Department of Motor Vehicles claims are dead actually are alive. “In many cases, these are people that our (county election officials) know, and these people are very much alive,” Andino said.
Andino’s comments come two weeks after state Motor Vehicles director Kevin Shwedo told the same House panel that he had cross-checked state Election Commission records and death records for a small sample of the state’s electorate. He said he had found more than 37,000 names on the voter list that appeared to be those of dead South Carolinians and more than 950 of those had cast ballots after their date of death.
The dispute comes against the larger backdrop of battle over a new state voter ID law. The state is working to clear federal hurdles so it can enact a new voter ID law that will require voters to present a valid S.C. driver’s license or another approved ID to cast a ballot. Shwedo’s boss, Gov. Nikki Haley, and many of her fellow Republicans favor the new law. Democrats oppose it, fearing it will suppress voter turnout, particularly among the poor and minorities.