Arthur Ravenel Bridge

Policy on Candidate Withdrawals

The purpose of this policy is to set a uniform procedure for candidate withdrawals, to help ensure the integrity of the ballot production process, and to help ensure compliance with federal and state election deadlines.  

  • To withdraw, a candidate must submit a statement signed and dated by the candidate that specifies the office for which the candidate was running, the election in which the candidate was running, and must clearly state the candidate’s intention to withdraw.
  • The statement must be submitted to the appropriate authority charged by law with conducting the election.
    • Statements regarding elections for federal, statewide and multi-county offices, including all State Senate and State House of Representatives seats, must be submitted to the State Election Commission.
    • Statements regarding elections for countywide and less-than-countywide offices, excluding State Senate and State House of Representatives seats, must be submitted to the appropriate county board of voter registration and elections or municipal election commission.
  • Candidate names will not be removed from ballots unless the proper election authority receives the statement in a timely manner.
    • The statement must be received by the proper election authority no later than 5:00 PM on the 53rd day before the election.
    • This deadline also applies to deaths, disqualifications and decertifications.  Candidate names will not be removed unless the proper election authority receives notification of the death, disqualification or decertification no later than 5:00 PM on the 53rd day before the election.
  • If a candidate submits a withdrawal statement to a political party, the State Election Commission and county boards of voter registration and elections will accept a copy of the statement from the political party.