South Carolina General Assembly

Last updated
South Carolina General Assembly
Seal of South Carolina.svg
Type
Type
Houses Senate
House of Representatives
Leadership
Harvey S. Peeler Jr. (R)
since January 8, 2019
Jay Lucas (R)
since December 2, 2014
Structure
Seats170 voting members:
46 Senators
124 Representatives
South Carolina Senate Composition (January 12, 2021).svg
Senate political groups
   Republican (30)
   Democratic (16)
SC House of Reps Seating by Party.svg
House political groups
  Republican (81)
  Democratic (43) [1]
Elections
Senate last election
November 2020
House last election
November 2024
Meeting place
SC State House at evening.jpg
South Carolina State House, Columbia
Website
http://www.scstatehouse.gov/
Governor Donald Russell addressing the Assembly in 1964 Donald Russell Addressing the SC General Assembly.jpg
Governor Donald Russell addressing the Assembly in 1964

The South Carolina General Assembly, also called the South Carolina Legislature, is the state legislature of the U.S. state of South Carolina. The legislature is bicameral and consists of the lower South Carolina House of Representatives and the upper South Carolina Senate. All together, the General Assembly consists of 170 members. The legislature convenes at the State House in Columbia.

Contents

Prior to the 1964 federal Reynolds v. Sims decision by the U.S. Supreme Court, the House of Representatives was apportioned so that each county had a number of representatives based on population, with each county guaranteed at least one representative, while each county had one Senator. Moreover, each county's General Assembly delegation also doubled as its county council, as the state constitution made no provision for local government.

Reynolds v. Sims [2] caused district lines to cross county lines, causing legislators to be on multiple county councils. This led to the passage of the Home Rule Act of 1975, which created county councils that were independent of the General Assembly. However, the General Assembly still retains considerable authority over local government. As a result, the legislature still devotes considerable time to local matters, and county legislative delegations still handle many matters that are handled by county governments in the rest of the country. [3]

There are 124 members of the South Carolina House of Representatives, who are elected every two years, and the South Carolina Senate has 46 members, elected every four years concurrent to the presidential election. For both houses, there are no term limits. The General Assembly meets in joint session to elect judges, with all 170 members having an equal vote in such elections.

Officers

Senate

South Carolina Senate Officers
PositionNameParty
President of the Senate Harvey S. Peeler Jr. Republican
Majority Leader A. Shane Massey Republican
Minority Leader Nikki G. Setzler Democratic

House of Representatives

South Carolina House of Representatives Officers
PositionNameParty
Speaker James H. "Jay" Lucas Republican
Speaker pro temporeTommy PopeRepublican
Majority Leader Gary Simrill Republican
Minority Leader J. Todd Rutherford Democratic

Historic Party Control

Below is a chart of party control in the South Carolina General Assembly since 1868.

South Carolina General Assembly

See also

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References

  1. https://www.scstatehouse.gov/house.php
  2. "Reynolds v. Sims 377 U.S. 533 (1964)". Justia Law. Retrieved 2016-05-12.
  3. "Scoppe: The Home Rule Act that didn't really allow home rule". thestate. Retrieved 2016-05-12.