By Brad Jordan
Last month, Carolina Forest residents went to the polls to cast their votes in the mid-term election. The big stories were: Republican Henry McMaster won the election for governor; Republican Katie Arrington, who was in a car accident during the campaign, lost to Democrat Joe Cunningham for the South Carolina 1st Congressional District seat. It was a position that flipped to the democrats after being held by Republicans unbroken since 1981. And Republican Orton Bellamy won, with 52% of the vote, over Democrat Harold Phillips, for the Horry County Council seat.
One of the major concerns in Carolina Forest has been the lack of voter turnout. With the population exploding by 500% between the 2000 and 2010 census, the Horry County voting districts were redrawn to provide more equal representation on the council. With continued growth over the past eight years, it is expected that there will again be a redistricting after the 2020 census.
In Horry County, there was participation countywide of 50% of registered voters casting ballots. In comparison, the Carolina Forest area had 43% participation of all registered voters. For a midterm election, this is not a bad turn out. The graph shows the progression of the number of voters versus actual voter turn out. In past midterm elections the participation has been somewhat lower. In 2010, only 35% of registered voters voted; in 2014, 26% voted. This year saw one of the best turn outs for midterm elections.
It is one of the Carolina Forest Civic Association’s goals to be the voice of the local residents in regards to the local municipalities and the county in which we live. Through continued vigilance in current events and issues facing our community, we are committed to being the voice of the residents and communicating our needs to those elected to represent us. We need your continued support and participation. Thank you for voting!