As we’ve pointed out until we’re blue in the face (or sore in the fingers), there’s very little difference between Republicans and Democrats in the S.C. General Assembly.

Palmetto Republicans favor big government, while Palmetto Democrats favor bigger government. Neither party can be trusted with your tax dollars, and (obviously) neither party has advanced reforms that will make this state more competitive or its government more efficient.

Such is the “center-left” ideological composition of the legislative tyranny, which exists to perpetuate its own influence at the expense of the best interests of the state. And sadly, the so-called “reformers” arrayed against this tyranny seem more concerned with building their national political profiles than forging a “conservative House” and a “conservative Senate.”

Anyway … the “majority party” in South Carolina currently holds 76 S.C. House seats – a modern record. Meanwhile Democrats control 47 seats, with one seat up for grabs. Over in the S.C. Senate, Republicans hold 26 seats compared to 19 for Democrats … also with one vacancy.

Those numbers aren’t likely to change anytime soon … particularly after Republicans redraw the state’s House and Senate district lines in advance of the 2012 elections.

If anything, a handful of “vulnerable” Democratic districts could be erased from the map. Or … the Democrats who occupy those districts could just switch parties now, a move that S.C. Rep. Ted Vick (D-Chesterfield) is reportedly considering.

Elected in 2004, Vick is one of several Democratic lawmakers who lives in a district with a comparatively low “BVAP.”

What’s “BVAP?”

It’s a political (electoral) acronym standing for “Black Voting Age Population,” and it’s a key measure of whether “Republicans” can win an election.

Basically, if you live in a district where the BVAP is less than 35 percent (as it is in Vick’s Chesterfield County district), then it’s considered possible for a Republican to win. If the BVAP is above 35 percent, then Republicans typically don’t even field a candidate.

GOP sources tell FITS that Vick approached the House Republican Caucus last month expressing an interest in switching parties. These sources also say that Vick’s overtures were rebuffed.

Vick says those reports are inaccurate, but pointed out that would-be party-switchers don’t need the consent of the GOP Caucus to switch parties.

“I didn’t know you needed permission to join the Republican Party,” Vick said, adding that “I could probably get elected in this district (as a member of) either party.”

So … is Vick considering switching parties?

Not now, he says, although he added that “everybody is trying to read the tea leaves” related to redistricting.

“Depending on how they draw the lines I don’t know whether or not I’ll even run again,” he said.