State of South Carolina

South Carolina COVID-19 Election Relief (Vote By Mail)

Middleton v. Andino

Lawsuit filed on behalf of individual voters, the South Carolina Democratic Party, Democratic National Committee (DNC) and Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) challenging South Carolina’s vote by mail restrictions ahead of the 2020 general election, specifically: the witness requirement for absentee ballots, lack of prepaid postage for mail-in ballots, ballot receipt deadline and ballot collection ban. As a result of the lawsuit, South Carolina agreed to provide prepaid postage for all mail-in ballots for the 2020 general election, likely saving voters over $1 million on postage. The district court struck down the witness requirement for absentee voting, but denied plaintiffs’ request for injunctive relief as to the other vote by mail restrictions. The en banc 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals voted 9-5 to affirm the district court’s order striking down the witness requirement, but the U.S. Supreme Court stayed the decision. The parties later dismissed the appeal.

Case Documents

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