Looking forward to celebrating the end of a grueling election season Tuesday evening with a stiff drink at a local watering hole?
You can, assuming you’re of age. But that wasn’t always the case in South Carolina.
Here are five state election laws — some repealed years ago and some still on the books — that might surprise you.
Vote early, vote often, vote sober
South Carolina was the last state in the country to lift a ban on Election Day alcohol sales, doing so just two years ago.
The ban, implemented in the late 1800s to discourage politicians from bribing voters with whiskey, made it illegal to buy or sell booze both at liquor stores and bars.
The law cost liquor sellers $1.1 million in sales every year, and the state lost out on more that $100,000 in taxes by restricting Election Day sales, according to Jay Hibbard of the Distilled Spirits Council of the United States.
No selfies, please
Performing your civic duty is certainly something to be proud of, but don’t show off in the voting booth by taking a selfie with your ballot.
South Carolina law outlaws showing any marked ballot to another person, and a 2012 state attorney general’s opinion ruled it illegal to take or share ballot photos snapped by cell phones or other devices.
Laws in 18 states bar taking photos of ballots or in voting booths, and six other states restrict photography in polling places but do allow photos of mail-in ballots, according to a review by The Associated Press.
Justin Timberlake made headlines last month when he posted a photo to Instagram showing him inside a voting booth in Tennessee, a state where ballot photos are illegal.
Sorry, you can’t write in Luke Skywalker for president
Forget voting for your favorite superhero or the quarterback of your alma mater’s football team for president.
While South Carolina allows for write-in candidates during mid-term elections, law prohibits voters from writing in a candidate not already on the ballot during presidential elections.
“The ballots shall also contain a place for voters to write in the name of any other person for whom they wish to vote except on ballots for the election of the President and Vice President,” according to state law.
Take your time when deciding which candidates to vote for, but don’t dilly-dally once you’re inside the voting booth.
South Carolina law says that “no voter, while receiving, preparing and casting his ballot, shall occupy a booth or compartment for a longer time than five minutes.”
Stragglers in the booth could face up to a $100 fine or a year in prison, according to the law.
Soldier or politician?
Until state law was changed in 2014, South Carolina voters chose who served as adjutant general, the head of the state’s Army National Guard.
South Carolina was the only state in the country where this was an elected position.
Two years ago, voters approved a constitutional amendment that makes the adjutant general an appointee of the governor.
We’ll have the information you need to understand the county and school referendums before you head into the voting booth on Tuesday. Also, read about races for state, county and local seats.