South Carolina Democratic operatives say one of their party’s own candidates for the first congressional district seat is actually a Republican plant.

In fact it’s not the first time such an accusation has been leveled against repeat candidate Ben Frasier.

One of four Democratics to file paperwork this month for the seat recently vacated by newly appointed U.S. Sen. Tim Scott, Frasier was the Democratic nominee against Scott in 2010. Two years earlier, he lost the Democratic nomination for the seat to activist Linda Ketner.

He did not run in 2012.

Frasier was a staffer to the late U.S. Rep. Mendel Rivers – who represented the first district from 1941-1970. Once an ardent segregationist, Rivers later softened his stance on racial issues – including hiring minorities like Frasier.

In 2010, U.S. Rep. Jim Clyburn publicly accused Frasier of being a GOP plant. Those allegations were repeated this week by several Democratic operatives.

Frasier did little to quell these suspicions in an interview with The Patch – stating that “they” told him to run.

He never specified who “they” were.

Hmmmmm …

Why would Republicans “plant” Frasier in the Democratic primary? Easy: He’s black, and if he’s able to siphon enough of the black vote it could force Democratic frontrunner Elizabeth Colbert-Busch to waste time and money competing in a runoff election.