Republican primary is Saturday

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By The Staff

If you plan to vote in the Republican presidential primary Saturday, you may see some names on the ballot that aren't familiar to you.

That's because the ballot will list some candidates who've already dropped out of the race, as well as some lesser-known candidates.

The Republicans on the ballot are: Hugh Cort, John Cox, Cap Fendig, Rudy Giuliani, Mike Huckabee, Duncan Hunter, John McCain, Ron Paul, Mitt Romney, Tom Tancredo and Fred Thompson.

Three presidential polls released Wednesday show McCain, a U.S. senator from Arizona, leading among other Republican candidates in South Carolina.

A Reuters/C-Span/Zogby poll showed McCain ahead of Huckabee by 6 points, 29 percent to Huckabee's 23 percent. Huckabee is the former governor of Arkansas. Romney, a former Massachusetts governor, was in third with 13 percent.

A poll from Clemson University also showed McCain leading with 29 percent, compared to Huckabee's 22 percent. Romney and Thompson, a former senator from Tennessee, were in a statistical tie for third place.

A Fox News poll released Wednesday showed McCain leading 25 percent, compared to Huckabee's 23 percent. Romney and Thompson trailed, in third and fourth place, respectively.

Because South Carolina's Republican primary is the first in the South, GOP presidential contenders have been barnstorming the state, trying to court voters.

Lancaster County hasn't attracted many candidates from the crowded field, however.

The only leading GOP candidate to visit Lancaster County was McCain. He spoke to a group at Sun City Carolina Lakes last October.

Important facts to know about primary voting

- Voting Saturday is from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

- 17 polling places will be open for the primary; some polling places have been consolidates. See Page 5A for a list of polling places.

- South Carolina doesn't register voters by political parties, and that means anyone may participate in Saturday's GOP contest or the Jan. 26 Democratic presidential primary. You cannot vote in both primaries, though. You choose which one you want to vote in.

- If you have any questions about voting in either primary, contact the Lancaster County Voter Registration Office at 285-2969.