- Associated Press - Tuesday, April 2, 2019

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - South Carolina’s newest state senator is a familiar figure at the Statehouse.

Republican Dwight Loftis was sworn in Tuesday, a week after winning a special election in a Greenville district. The seat was left vacant after William Timmons won a U.S. House seat in November.

Loftis won 56 percent of the vote over Democrat Tina Belge.

The 76-year-old Loftis has been a member of the South Carolina House since 1996 before running to move to the upper chamber.

Loftis’ election now has the South Carolina Senate with 27 Republicans and 19 Democrats.

A special election will be held to fill Loftis’ House seat.

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