South Carolina is going on the record.
Gov. Nikki Haley signed a bill Tuesday that requires the state's General Assembly to record all its votes on budget items and final votes on other legislative matters.
“We have changed the face of South Carolina forever,” said Haley, who was joined by grassroots activists from across the state for the signing ceremony.
“Today we have just gone from one of the weakest states in the country on transparency to one of the strongest in the nation on accountability."
The legislation is three years in the making, and a measure Haley supported while lieutenant to former Gov. Mark Sanford.
A previous effort to pass legislation requiring more roll-call votes succeeded in the state House in 2009, but stalled in the Senate, where opponents claimed it violated the state constitution allowing each legislative chamber to set its own voting rules.
But after a 110-0 vote in the House and a 32-12 vote in the Senate, which incidentally were recorded, opponents now say not much has changed since lawmakers generally kept track anyway.
South Carolina is one of 14 states that allowed its assembly to skip tracking all its votes, according to the the National Conference of State Legislatures.
Haley, who at the 100-day mark of her term, signed 15 pieces of legislation to date, praised the move.
"This is an absolutely historic day. ... This is about the people of this state and this is about the people having the right to know what their elected officials are doing all the time,” she said.