A former Anne Arundel County lawmaker received a hero's welcome this week from the Maryland Republican Party when he switched his political affiliation.
David G. Boschert, a former County Council chairman, registered as a member of the GOP in a "signing" ceremony Friday morning.
The ceremony was staged in the office of state Senate Minority Leader John A. Cade, a Republican from Severna Park, and included other state party leaders. The signing was to be re-enacted at the GOP's state convention in Ocean City yesterday.
Mr. Boschert, who ran unsuccessfully as a Democrat last year for the state House of Delegates, said the Democratic Party no longer represents his "moderate-to-conservative" views.
"I did not lose [the November election]; the Democratic Party lost," said Mr. Boschert, a Crownsville resident and public relations consultant. "I had a lot of Republican support."
Republican leaders, including County Executive John G. Gary, said they had recruited Mr. Boschert for several years.
He is the second prominent Anne Arundel County Democrat enticed by GOP recruiters to switch parties within the last year.
State Sen. Edward Middlebrooks of Glen Burnie -- who also was chairman of the County Council -- abandoned the Democratic Party for the GOP last spring. Mr. Middlebrooks defeated Michael J. Wagner, a 13-year State House veteran, last November to win the Senate seat.
Ron Franks, vice chairman of the state GOP, recalled listening to Mr. Boschert speak at a campaign forum in Odenton last summer.
"I wasn't sure whether it was Dave speaking or myself," said Mr. Franks, himself an unsuccessful candidate for Congress. "Philosophically, I think [Mr. Boschert will] fit right in."