by Paul Bowers
Have you been pulling your hair out trying to determine who's going to be on your ballot in Charleston County? Yeah, us too.
Apparently somebody at the county's Board of Elections and Voter Registration fell asleep at the keyboard while adding links to the PDF list of sample ballots, but we've found a way around the problem. Here's what you do:
1. Go to the PDF embedded at the bottom of this page, or download it here. Find your precinct on the list (it's listed on your voter registration card) and right-click (for Mac users, Control-click) on the blue text under "Ballot Style." Then click "Copy Link Location," "Copy Link Address," or whatever the equivalent is on your particular browser.
2. Open a new document in Word or another text editing program and paste the link using Ctrl-V (Windows) or Command-V (Mac). The URL will look something like this: http://localhost/var/www/apps/conversion/tmp/scratch_8/General%20Election%20-%20Ballot%20Style%2027%20English.pdf
3. Highlight the following text, then copy it (Ctrl-C or Command-C): http://www.charlestoncounty.org/departments/BEVR/general/
Open a new internet browser window or tab and paste that text into the address bar. (Hitting Enter won't get you anywhere yet, but that's OK).
4. Go back to your text document and copy everything starting with the word "General." In the example above, for instance, you would highlight and copy only the part that looks like this: General%20Election%20-%20Ballot%20Style%2027%20English.pdf
5. Go to the internet browser window you just opened and paste the text at the end of the address. Hit Enter.
If you live in Charleston County and aren't sure where you will need to go to vote, the BEVR has actually created a handy searchable map of polling locations here.
Live in Dorchester County? You should have an easier time finding a sample ballot. The good folks at the Dorchester County Board of Elections & Voter Registration have set up an easy-to-use website, and the links appear to be working. Just click here.
Berkeley County only seems to be offering a PDF of all the races in Berkeley County, but you should be able to look at your voter registration card and see which races apply to you.
If all else fails, Google has built a pretty handy tool where you can enter your address and see the races in which you'll be eligible to vote. It seems to be missing some local races, but it might be a helpful starting point. Click here.
Mad props to City Paper reader FastFred for figuring out a way around the Charleston County BEVR's buffoonery and sharing it in the comment section on our story "How to Vote." FastFred, you have been awarded 10,000 Internet Points and a million Civic Duty Points.