12-18-9. Observation of voting and counting--Public and poll watchers--Penalty.

Any candidate, party, or ballot question committee may have poll watchers present at a polling place for the purpose of observing the voting and counting process. During voting hours, a candidate who is on the ballot being voted on may not serve as a poll watcher and may only be present at a polling place to cast the candidate's vote.

Members of the public may observe the voting and counting process at any polling location in a manner that does not interfere with the duties of the poll workers or poll watchers. Each polling place must be arranged in a manner that permits each poll watcher and observer to be positioned in a location where the poll watcher and observer may plainly see and hear what is done within the polling place.

A violation of this section by either a poll watcher, observer, or a poll worker is a Class 2 misdemeanor.

Source: SL 1897, ch 60, § 32; RPolC 1903, § 1921; RC 1919, § 7271; SDC 1939, § 16.1207; SL 1972, ch 85, § 3; SL 1974, ch 118, § 113; SL 1975, ch 124, § 1; SL 2004, ch 108, § 4; SL 2024, ch 47, § 2.