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Prof. Justin Levitt's Doug Spencer's Guide to Drawing the Electoral Lines

State Summary

South Carolina’s congressional and state legislative lines are both drawn by the state legislature, as a regular statute, subject to gubernatorial veto.

In the 2010 cycle, the legislature passed a congressional plan (H 3992) on July 26, 2011, which was signed on Aug. 1, 2011, and precleared by the DoJ on Oct. 28. 2011.  The legislature passed state Senate lines (S 815) and state House lines (H 3991) on June 22, 2011; both bills were signed on June 28, 2011, and precleared on Nov. 14, 2011, and Oct. 11, 2011, respectively.

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Seats: (projected)

Institution:

Drawn by:

Plan Status:

Party Control:
  Upper House:
  Lower House:
  Governor:

Key Info for 2000 Cycle

Primary governing law

Key Info for 2020 Cycle

Primary governing law

Data

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Shapefile GeoJSON PDF

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The Latest Updates

Aug 2, 2021
South Carolina's Senate Judiciary Redistricting Subcommittee will hold meetings in Greenville, Florence, and Beaufort during the week of Aug. 2 to gather public input regarding proposed state and congressional maps.

Institution

South Carolina’s congressional and state legislative lines are both drawn by the state legislature, as a regular statute, subject to gubernatorial veto.

Timing

South Carolina state law does not impose a particular deadline for drawing congressional or state legislative lines, though candidates must file for congressional and state legislative primary elections by Mar. 30, 2022. [S.C. Code § 7-11-15]  The legislative session began on Jan. 12, 2021, and continues through the end of the year.

South Carolina does not prohibit redrawing either congressional or state legislative district lines mid-decade, before the next Census. [S.C. Const. art. III, § 3S.C. Const. art. VII, §13]

Public input

The legislature has not announced any specific plans for public input this cycle just yet.

Criteria

Like all states, South Carolina must comply with constitutional equal population requirements and must abide by the Voting Rights Act and constitutional rules on race.

There are no further requirements for either congressional or state legislative districts in South Carolina law.  In the past, the legislative redistricting committees have issued guidelines for congressional and state legislative districts; these guidelines may be changed at any time.

2010 cycle

In the 2010 cycle, South Carolina was subject to preclearance under the federal Voting Rights Act.

South Carolina’s legislature passed a congressional plan (H 3992) on July 26, 2011, which was signed on Aug. 1, 2011, and precleared by the DoJ on Oct. 28. 2011.

The state legislature passed state Senate lines (S 815) and state House lines (H 3991) on June 22, 2011; both bills were signed on June 28, 2011. The state House plan was sent for preclearance to both the DoJ and federal court in Washington, DC, and precleared by the DoJ on Oct. 11, 2011. The state Senate plan was also submitted to both the DoJ and federal court, and was precleared on Nov. 14, 2011.

The congressional and state legislative plans were challenged in federal court, and upheld.  [Backus v. South Carolina, 857 F. Supp. 2d 553 (D.S.C. 2012), aff’d, 133 S. Ct. 156 (2012)

Materials and maps are available here for the Senate, and here for the House.

2000 cycle

In the 2000 cycle, South Carolina was subject to preclearance under the federal Voting Rights Act.

South Carolina’s legislature passed a statute with both congressional and state legislative lines (3003), which was vetoed on Aug. 30, 2001. When the legislature failed to pass a subsequent plan, a federal court took control of the process, and drew both congressional and state legislative districts on Mar. 20, 2002.  [Colleton County Council v. McConnell, 201 F. Supp. 2d 618 (D.S.C. 2002)]

The legislature then redrew the state legislative lines (S. 591), through a plan that was signed on June 2, 2003.  The plan was precleared no later than the expiration of the 60-day period for objection, which was no later than Aug. 30, 2003, for the state Senate map and no later than Oct. 6, 2003, for the House map.  It does not appear that there maps were further challenged in court.

Materials and maps are available here.