More than 13,000 South Carolina residents have received a new voter registration card that includes their photo, but only a little more than 200 of those individuals live in Aiken County.
According to Associated Press reports, nearly 2,300 Richland County residents have been issued the new ID voter cards. That surpasses any other county in the state. According to the Aiken County Registration and Elections, 222 residents received one of these new cards in 2013 and 14 have been requested so far this year.
Executive Director of Aiken County Registration and Elections Cynthia D. Holland said she believes the number of individuals obtaining these new cards is so low because many voters already have some form of identification that is acceptable.
Out of the nearly three million registered voters statewide, approximately 103,000 of them reside in Aiken County.
The new law for identification at the polls went into effect in January of 2013. Voters are asked to show one of the following forms of photo identification at their polling places: an S.C. driver's license, an ID card issued by state Department of Motor Vehicles, an S.C. voter registration card with photo, a federal military ID or a U.S. passport.
Anyone without a photo ID on Election Day due to a “reasonable impediment” of obtaining one may vote a provisional ballot after showing a non-photo voter registration card.
The state Election Commission considers a religious objection to being photographed, lack of birth certificate, disability or illness, work schedule or lack of transportation as reasonable impediments.
Registered voters can get a voter registration card with a photo from the Aiken County Registration and Elections office by providing their date of birth and the last four digits of their Social Security Number. The office is located at 916 Vaucluse Road and can be reached at 803-642-2028.
Amy Banton is the County reporter for the Aiken Standard and has been with the publication since May 2010. She is a graduate of Randolph-Macon Woman's College and a native of Rustburg, Va.