S.C. legislator pulls a reverse Arlen Specter, becomes Republican

South Carolina State Rep. Dennis Moss switched parties yesterday, becoming a Republican in the hopes of better representing his conservative district.

"My district's a conservative district," Moss told the Rock Hill Herald. "Obama lost my district pretty substantially. I don't know what I can say, other than to represent my district to the best of my ability, I've got to be where I can do that effectively."

In an interesting reversal of the scene in Congress when Arlen Specter switched parties, Moss's decision is drawing bitter rebukes from state Democrats who accuse him of political posturing for his re-election campaign.

"Dennis Moss has always told me that he was afraid of being beaten by a Republican," said Democratic State Party Chairwoman Carol Fowler. "I'm sure it's been hard for him to function as a legislator when he was more concerned about his own re-election than about serving the people who voted for him."

Republicans hold the majority in the state house, so Moss's switch will give him more access to the levers of power.

The conservative legislator had bucked his party previously, endorsing former Arksansas Gov. Mike Huckabee (R) in the 2008 presidential election. His campaign signs, according to the Herald, always boasted the word "conservative" in huge letters.

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