From Campaign Spot’s Senior South Carolina Correspondent, a.k.a., “Dad”, reporting from Hilton Head Island:
Miserable weather down here. Cold rain all day. When we voted in the morning, polls weren’t that full, but I heard on the radio, that in the afternoon they’re getting medium to heavy turnout.
I think McCain is going to win here but it will be close. This is McCain country.
On the way to voting, just outside the legal range for campaigning near the polling place, there was one guy on the road in the pouring rain with his McCain sign.
CSSSCC adds, “I completed the first local exit poll, which indicates Thompson winning 2 to 1. The sample size was 3.”
From Campaign Spot reader Michael:
I voted at 8:30AM in Seneca, SC in 41 degrees Farenheit with a light drizzle falling. I was the 45th voter in my precinct. I think turnout will be heavy and favor Thompson and Huckabee. It is 12:30PM now and conditions are the same.
There has been a notable surge in literature and signs for both Thompson and Huckabee in the last 48 hours. For the last week every empty roadside lot has had a Ron Paul sign. I did not vote for Huckabee or Paul. McCain signs are uncommon.
I liked this assessment from Scott:
I live in the Forest Lake portion of Columbia. It’s an older, middle class to upper class demographic in this precinct, I expect it to be McCain country. Normally the voter turnout in our Arcadia precinct is pretty heavy, it’s just not today. Only 70 voters in the first three hours of voting. I expect, with the worsening weather, that turnout will remain low.
I can tell you that in the “get your milk and bread before the snow comes” polling, Publix is slightly more crowded than Piggly Wiggly.
UPDATE: Another update, this one from Gary, who was volunteering on the ground in Columbia for Huckabee.
Talked to a guy in Anderson who said weather was not all that bad but obviously rainy and cold. Nothing worth panicking for, but that doesn’t necessarily mean the television stations aren’t hyping.
Some experienced folks in the Upstate tell us turnout matches 2000. But no one keeps data on what turnout was the previous election in the middle of the day — probably because as one person put it to me, “No one gets paid to do that” — so it’s all feel.