Mary Mulhern weighing run for mayor, County Commission
Tampa City Council member Mary Mulhern said today she's considering either running for mayor in March 2011 or taking on Republican Hillsborough County Commissioner Ken Hagan in November 2010. Hagan is running for a county-wide commission seat being vacated by Jim Norman because of term limits.
"People have been encouraging me to run against Hagan because they think I can beat him," she said. But Mulhern said she also has been encouraged to run for mayor. She said she's likely to decide next week which post to pursue.
The Tampa mayor's race is expected to be crowded. So far, only City Council chairman Tom Scott and former Tampa police captain Marion Lewis have filed for the run to replace Pam Iorio, who is term-limited out of the job. Others -- including City Council member Linda Saul-Sena, County Commissioner Rose Ferlita, former Hillsborough County Commissioner Ed Turanchik, former Mayor Dick Greco and former City Council member Bob Buckhorn -- have expressed an interest in being the city's chief executive but say the election is too far off to make it official. Mulhern said: "There's not really any reason to wait."
In either case, she said, she wants to start raising money and getting her name before voters as soon as possible. Mulhern was elected to the City Council in 2007 after being defeated in 2006 by Rose Ferlita in a race for the County Commission. On the council, she has been particularly active on environmental and budget issues.
Janet Zink, Times Staff Writer