Absentee voting ends Nov. 5

The last day to vote absentee in the November general election is Nov. 5.

Absentee voting is ongoing at the Aiken County Registration and Elections office and at a satellite office in Kalmia Plaza.

Absentee voting is open to all those who, depending on their individual circumstances, will not be able to visit their polling precinct on Election Day. Whether casting their absentee vote in person or by mail, a person must fill out an application attesting to their reason for voting absentee.

The general election is Nov. 6.

On Nov. 5, absentee voting may be completed in person up until 5 p.m.

More than 2,700 absentee ballots have been cast at the registration and elections office, according to executive director Cynthia Holland. Nearly 828 have been cast at Kalmia Plaza, and in the three days absentee voting was open at the Nancy Carson Library, 275 absentee ballots were cast.

Overall, more than 7,000 absentee ballots have been submitted, including mailed-in ballots.

Absentee voting differs from early voting in that absentee voting is open only to those who meet certain qualifications for why they will not be present at their precinct on Election Day.

In-person early voting, which South Carolina does not currently allow, permits any registered voter to cast a ballot before the election without excuse or justification.

People who, for reasons of employment, will not be able to vote, those with physical disabilities or those who will be out of their county of residence on Election Day, among other reasons, may vote absentee.

Absentee votes are accepted in person at the Aiken County Registration and Elections Office, 916 Vaucluse Road, and at the satellite office in Kalmia Plaza, 1520 Richland Ave. W. People can also call the office to request an absentee ballot application be mailed to their residence or print out an application from www.scvotes.org.

If voting absentee in person, a person must have with them either their registration card, their driver's license or a state-issued photo ID.

Sample ballots by precinct are available at www.aikencountysc.gov.

For more information, call the Registration and Elections office at 642-2028. Its mailing address is 916 Vaucluse Road, Aiken, SC 29801. Its fax number is 642-2029.

Persons Qualified to Vote by Absentee Ballot:

• Persons who will be on vacation outside their county of residence on Election Day

• Members of the Uniformed Services or Merchant Marine, and their spouses and dependents residing with them

• Persons who, for reasons of employment, will not be able to vote on election day

• Physically disabled persons

• Persons 65 years of age or older

• Persons serving as a juror in state or federal court on Election Day

• Persons admitted to the hospital as emergency patients on day of election or within a four-day period before the election

• Persons with a death or funeral in the family within three days before the election

• Persons confined to a jail or pre-trial facility pending disposition of arrest or trial

• Persons attending sick or physically disabled persons

• Certified poll watchers, poll managers and county election officials working on Election Day