South Carolina Democratic Senate Candidate, Vic Rawl, filed a protest of last Tuesday’s election results with the South Carolina Democratic Party. Rawl said he, did not file the protest for personal or political gain, but on behalf of the people of South Carolina. He cites irregularities in the election results that caused him to lose and his opponent, Alvin Greene to win by nearly thirty thousand votes.
At this point, the people of our state do not have the basic confidence that their vote will be counted.
The strange circumstances surrounding Tuesday’s vote require a thorough investigation. For better or worse, this protest process is the only platform currently available for that investigation.
And let me be clear: regardless of the outcome of this protest, a full and unblinking investigation of this election and the overall integrity of South Carolina’s election system must go forward. Whether our protest is upheld or not, I intend to bring my full energies to electoral reform well into the future.
I want to speak briefly about the bases for our protest.
First is ongoing analysis of the election returns themselves, which indicate irregularities.
Second are the many voters and poll workers who continue to contact us with their stories of extremely unusual incidents while trying to vote and administer this election.
These range from voters who repeatedly pressed the screen for me only to have the other candidate’s name appear, to poll workers who had to change program cards multiple times, to at least one voter in the Republican primary who had the Democratic U.S. Senate race appear on her ballot.
For those who experienced problems voting, I urge you to go to our website, www.vicrawl.com and use the form there to report them. You can also call our Election Integrity Hotline at 843-278-0510.
Third is the well-documented unreliability and unverifiability of the voting machines used in South Carolina.
It is worth noting that these machines were purchased surplus from Louisiana after that state outlawed them.
The full details of our protest will be presented on Thursday.
For the people of South Carolina, getting to the bottom of Tuesday’s results will build confidence, either way.
I also hope that a full and frank discussion of our voting system will result in substantial reform.
At the risk of repetition, this protest is not about me, or my personal political fortunes. Indeed, if the protest is upheld and a new election ordered, I have not decided whether to run in it.
But, either way, I am not done with the issue of fixing our elections.
Lastly, let me make something clear. Like all of you, I am aware of the controversies surrounding Mr. Greene. This protest is not about him either.
I would like to speak directly to Mr. Greene and say: “Sir, this is not about you, and it’s not about me. I wish you and your family nothing but the best in the weeks and months ahead.”