Why were Columbus County sheriff-elect and his wife voting in two separate counties?


Sheriff-elect Jody Greene (R) is quite busy defending himself from accusations that — among other things — he doesn’t live in Columbus County.  State law requires that sheriffs live IN the county they serve.

Greene is struggling to keep his story straight.  He’s maintained that he has been a long-term resident on family property in the Columbus County community of Cerro Gordo.  Yet, driveby media can’t seem to find any evidence of a residential dwelling on that property.

A travel camper is parked there. however.  One driveby outlet quoted Greene as saying that he “keep[s] [his] dogs” in the camper and he and his wife live in a “dwelling” deep in a wooded section of the property.

Another driveby outlet found that there has never been any record of electrical service on the property.  In another interview, Greene was quoted as saying that he and his wife “live” in the camper.

The camper, however, is registered to an Horry County address where Greene does own a residence.

Voter registration records throw another monkey-wrench in this story.  According to the state board of elections, Greene registered to vote in Columbus County in 2012.  Since then, he has voted in Columbus County every two years as a Republican.

(However, he has an “inactive” registration from 1998 to 2010 — as a Democrat — at an address in the Robeson County town of Fairmont.)

Mrs. Greene is a different story. She has been registered to vote in North Carolina since 1994.  From 1994 to November 2016, she voted in neighboring Robeson County as a Democrat.  She cast her first ballot in Columbus County, as a Republican, in 2018.

We found an obituary from 2013 in Robeson County that indicates the Greenes have been married at least since that year.

Soooo — why would a lawfully married couple be voting in two different counties?  And how legal / kosher would that be?

Here are some helpful hints from the state board of elections:

Your legal voting residence is your place of permanent domicile.

That place shall be considered the residence of a person in which that person’s habitation is fixed, and to which, whenever that person is absent, that person has the intention of returning. […]

Citizens who are homeless may register and vote.

In the event that a person’s residence is not a traditional residence associated with real property, then the location of the usual sleeping area for that person shall be controlling as to the residency of that person. Residence shall be broadly construed to provide all persons with the opportunity to register and to vote, including stating a mailing address different from residence address. Voter registration forms provide a space for an applicant to visually map where they usually sleep. […]

You may continue to vote in your usual North Carolina county if you only temporarily relocate.

A person shall not be considered to have lost that person’s residence if that person leaves home and goes into another state, county, municipality, precinct, ward, or other election district of North Carolina, for temporary purposes only, with the intention of returning. […]

You may not vote in a county if you are only living in that county on a temporary basis.

A person shall not be considered to have gained a residence in any county, municipality, precinct, ward, or other election district of North Carolina, into which that person comes for temporary purposes only, without the intention of making that county, municipality, precinct, ward, or other election district a permanent place of abode.[…]

When you move to a new county or state, you are no longer eligible to vote in your previous county.

If a person removes to another state or county, municipality, precinct, ward, or other election district within North Carolina, with the intention of making that state, county, municipality, precinct, ward, or other election district a permanent residence, that person shall be considered to have lost residence in the state, county, municipality, precinct, ward, or other election district from which that person has removed.[…]

If you move away and establish a new residence for an indefinite period, you are no longer eligible to vote in your previous county, even if you believe that you may eventuallyreturn to your previous residence.

If a person removes to another state or county, municipality, precinct, ward, or other election district within North Carolina, with the intention of remaining there an indefinite time and making that state, county, municipality, precinct, ward, or other election district that person’s place of residence, that person shall be considered to have lost that person’s place of residence in North Carolina, county, municipality, precinct, ward, or other election district from which that person has removed, notwithstanding that person may entertain an intention to return at some future time.[…]

If you move away, register and vote in another county or state, you will no longer be eligible to vote in your previous county.

If a person goes into another state, county, municipality, precinct, ward, or other election district, or into the District of Columbia, and while there exercises the right of a citizen by voting in an election, that person shall be considered to have lost residence in that State, county, municipality, precinct, ward, or other election district from which that person removed.[…]

College students may register and vote in the county where they are attending college (in most situations, the college student could also opt to register or remain registered at the address where they lived previous to moving away for college, and could choose to vote absentee). If a student registers at his or her school address, that registration cancels any previous registration in another county.

So long as a student intends to make the student’s home in the community where the student is physically present for the purpose of attending school while the student is attending school and has no intent to return to the student’s former home after graduation, the student may claim the college community as the student’s domicile. The student need not also intend to stay in the college community beyond graduation in order to establish domicile there.

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