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Early Turnout Well Above Average

John Edwards
COLUMBIA, SC - Senator John Edwards (D-NC) visits a polling station at Greenview Park January 26, 2008 in Columbia, South Carolina. (Getty Images).
By Shailagh Murray COLUMBIA, S.C. -- Early signs here suggests turnout could shatter 2004 totals. Several black precincts in Richland County, where Columbia is located, reported hitting 25 percent of all registered voters by midday, according to state party officials.

Lexington County, a predominantly Republican County next door and to the west, also is seeing spikes. In one Lexington black precinct, 80 people total voted in 2004; today, 95 had voted by noon. In another black precinct, 59 people voted in 2004; by noon today, 118 had showed up. In mixed precincts in Lexington, numbers were higher as well: one reported 149 voters as of noon today, compared to 176 in 2004. And, in one predominantly white precinct in Lexington County, twice as many people had voted as of 10:20 this morning, as in 2004.

The South Carolina Democratic Party was hoping for a turnout of 350,000 people today -- about 60,000 more than went to the polls in 2004.

Early reports from former Sen. John Edwards' hometown of Seneca don't suggest jaw-dropping turnout for the mill town's favorite son, however. A total of 637 people had voted in the town's four precincts as of noon today. In 2004, when Edwards was also a candidate for the nomination, 1015 Seneca residents voted.

By Web Politics Editor  |  January 26, 2008; 1:42 PM ET
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Next: South Carolina, Region by Region


When Posters call someone a racist, my first thought generally is "Dr. Heal thyself". When I run into people that say, with some certainty, "the U.S. isn't ready for a black President, I ask them if its the U.S., or them who arent ready?

Posted by: fnlorrain | January 26, 2008 6:40 PM | Report abuse

In an election year when I would have hoped that Americans would repudiate what has been a horrible two-term republican administration, here's what's happened:

As the democratic contest has narrowed to a contest between a woman and a black man, the dogs of racial division have begun barking in full voice.

The number of racist posts in the WaPo comment threads has surely increased at least 900 per cent during the past 6 months - on all sorts of articles, ranging from the murder of a manager at a Popeyes restaurant, to election articles, to a well-thought-out piece by Colby King.

Those fanning these flames should, but no doubt will not, feel deeply ashamed of the harm they are doing to their communities and their nation - and their descendants, who will be left to damp the racism that this generation might have helped heal, but has instead inflamed.

Posted by: officermancuso | January 26, 2008 6:35 PM | Report abuse

I'm appalled by the number of posters here who see equivalence between the Clintons' smear campaign and Obama's reluctant responses. The Clintons are like the kid who pinches the other students under the table and then busts out crying when they retaliate.
Bullies never admit their responsibility.

Posted by: ViejitaDelOeste | January 26, 2008 6:23 PM | Report abuse

Barack Obama competed against Bill Clinton in South Carolina, not Hillary. For those who think voting for Hillary is a two-for-one Presidency, let me refresh your memory.
Bill Clinton's domestic agenda did not bring us universal health care and his focus on eliminating the budget deficit meant he did little for the poor and working people in America.
The Clinton administration actually attacked the disproportionately non-white poor in numerous interrelated ways. Clinton signed a punitive welfare reform bill that ended the federal government's guarantee of financial help to impoverished families with dependent children. He also scored points with conservatives by taking welfare benefits away from legal as well as illegal immigrants.
Meanwhile, Clinton increased economic insecurity in poor and working-class American communities by signing the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). NAFTA destroyed tens of thousands of American industrial jobs by tearing down long-established regulatory barriers to the movement of corporate capital and commodities across the US-Mexican border.

Posted by: Katy7540 | January 26, 2008 5:37 PM | Report abuse



so how did this play into "Bush ignores August 6 2001" Intelligence sheet stating Bin Ladin determined to attack US and he went on vacation they ignored all indications of the terrorist attacks from Jan thru Sep 2001 and so you blame the Clintons for it "need some more kool aid"?

Posted by: mikey30919 | January 26, 2008 5:16 PM | Report abuse


So, let me get this straight -- you claim that "most" African-Americans are utterly racist because they always vote for the African-American candidates only on the basis of skin color -- yet you want us to "Always vote against the African-American candidate" only on the basis of skin color? Do you want to try that again?

Posted by: JakeD | January 26, 2008 5:14 PM | Report abuse

the media has blamed President Clinton for this mess this week and Senator Clinton for the Rezco comment, let's look at facts if Senator Obama had not used the Walmart line on Hillary she would not have beat him over the head with Rezco, Bill Clintons "blow up" at the CNN reporter has been covered as him losing it, what was the question she asked him?

Dick Harpoolian from the Obama campaign compares you to a campaigner of the "Atwater" style of campaigning and laid out the accusations of racial baiting, so she lays out Dick Hartpoolians little "race trap" and Bill gets blamed

excuse me folks this is the south and race does play a part in politics this might be the 21st century but facts are facts the south is alive and well even Senator Obama pointed out "Scooter libby justice versus Jenna 6 justice" if that is not an appeal to black voters what is?

They are all doing it and this is just politics as normal in the south and everyone acts "surprised" why?

Posted by: mikey30919 | January 26, 2008 5:11 PM | Report abuse

Most African-Americans are utterly racist. They always vote for the African-American candidates only on the basis of skin color.

Just look at the Nevada caucus. African-Americans overwhelmingly voted for the African-American candidate regardless of his lack of qualifications.

By contrast, in the New-Hampshire primary, "many Democratic women really wanted to vote for Clinton but felt it was their duty as informed voters to check out all the candidates." The non-African-American women did not vote on the basis of skin color. (Read "The Real Story In New Hampshire" by Andrew Cline, "The Washington Post", 2008 January 19, .)

How can you fight the stark racism exhibited by most African-Americans?

Always vote against the African-American candidate. Please use your vote to counteract the votes of racist African-American voters.

Posted by: copydesk | January 26, 2008 4:56 PM | Report abuse

JakeD; At least you woke up in time to do something about your bad decision. I am eagerly awaiting some of the exit polling data that will be released after the polls close. How the % of black voters support Obama is where the "Race" issue will be found.

Posted by: lylepink | January 26, 2008 4:52 PM | Report abuse

Either side leveling accusations of "lying, lowlife, racists" is divisive IMHO. I am no longer supporting Obama, even though I was considering it -- I even donated to his campaign -- up until I was banned from his campaign blog ; )

Posted by: JakeD | January 26, 2008 4:43 PM | Report abuse

HotNuke, based on his posts, doesn't really have a candidate to support. Milosevic is now dead, and David Duke isn't running.

Posted by: steveboyington | January 26, 2008 4:38 PM | Report abuse


Again the question is asked, "Which candidate are you supporting?"

Afraid to state that you are supporting a RepubliCON candidate?

Posted by: critter69 | January 26, 2008 4:30 PM | Report abuse

hhkeller, I'm not sure what part of dishonesty and division has been good for the country. It's one thing to have a spirited debate about issues, but what we've basically had the last week is a smear campaign by the Clintons. I'm afraid I no longer believe they're a good choice for America.

Posted by: davestickler | January 26, 2008 4:17 PM | Report abuse

To JakeD:

Not the lying, lowlife, RACIST scumbag named Obama YOU support, that's for sure.

Posted by: hotnuke2007 | January 26, 2008 4:11 PM | Report abuse


Which candidate are you supporting?

Posted by: JakeD | January 26, 2008 4:06 PM | Report abuse

To steveboyington and fjstratford:

Man would I love that to happen. A loss by Obama in South Carolina would end his lying, lowlife, racist, DIVISIVE campaign in its tracks.

From your keyboard to God's ears.

Posted by: hotnuke2007 | January 26, 2008 4:05 PM | Report abuse

I hope that the 38% of undecideds decided to vote for Hillary. Just like they did in NH.

Posted by: fjstratford | January 26, 2008 3:57 PM | Report abuse

Here in New Hampshire, record turnout also occurred. The pundits figured that would mean a lot of voters wanted to come out for change. Instead, they came out to support Hillary Clinton. Same dynamic in South Carolina?

Posted by: steveboyington | January 26, 2008 3:56 PM | Report abuse

If Romney wins because Barack and Hillary have inflicted mortal wounds on each other, I agree that the country wins : )

Posted by: JakeD | January 26, 2008 3:32 PM | Report abuse

The democratic primary has been good for democracy. No matter who wins the country wins.

Posted by: hhkeller | January 26, 2008 3:28 PM | Report abuse

The democratic primary has been good for democracy. No matter who wins the country wins.

Posted by: hhkeller | January 26, 2008 3:28 PM | Report abuse

I would be shocked if Obama does not win South Carolina (which is why he wanted Stephen Colbert out of that race in the first place ; )

Posted by: JakeD | January 26, 2008 3:10 PM | Report abuse

Whether this get posted or not, I think we should tackle the right issues when it come to the Clintons.
August 1989:
The Clintons were in power when American Embassies in Nairobi, Kenya and Dar es Salaam, Tanzania all in Africa got attack by Osama Bin Laden. Information was sent to the White House, and nothing was done other than a speech of condolences for the victim's families in Africa. It was just the Africans - Who care. This was the message that was received in Africa.
We all thought the Americans will back us because of the information that we gave them - Osama was in the hide outs (Libya). We later found out from source closer to presidents of those African countries that were attacked that, the US have contacted the Saud ices and received Millions of Dollars that were ship to some Swiss Banks. The Swiss government is refusing to address this situation or conspiracy.
Africans have this adage: "the rain that falls on my house and cause destruction will soon drift to your house." This is what happened on Sep 11Th, when US was attack right at home. Had it been the Clintons had taken out Osama, 3000 US citizens would not have died. Who then, should we point fingers at - The CLINTONS. They knew all the plots of Osama from briefings by the CIA and FBI but because they had taken money from the Saud ices, they wouldn't pursue the safety of 3000 US citizens.
Call this a verbose claim, they video is available when US intelligent saw Osama getting into a bucker for their usual meeting after they had attacked the US embassies. Despite a call to the White House, THE CLINTONS WILL NOT APPROVE THE KILLING OF OSAMA.

So, all we are asking is to tell the truth about what happen before 9/11.

Sending the Clintons to the White is not something that we cannot let it happen.

To those who intend to vote for the Clintons, bare this in mind:


Posted by: ordgobaltc | January 26, 2008 2:49 PM | Report abuse

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