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The staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Republican evens score, backs Dem for sheriff



Robert Sullivan, a Republican who challenged his former boss in the Pasco County sheriff's primary, today threw his support to Democrat Kim Bogart.

Sullivan, a former vice and narcotics commander, said he's still a "committed Republican who holds dear the values set forth by Ronald Reagan." But he's so disenchanted by Sheriff Bob White's leadership, he couldn't back him.

"Partisan politics cannot trump public safety," Sullivan told Bay Buzz.

Sullivan's move evens things out following Tuesday's primary. Democrat Jeff Deremer, who lost in the primary to Bogart, earlier this week pledged his support for White.

Bogart said he's thrilled to have the support of Sullivan, who he worked with for years at the agency they both hoped to lead.

Sullivan collected more than 9,000 votes and lost by 10 points Tuesday against a far better-funded incumbent who counts Gov. Charlie Crist among his supporters. White, who is seeking a third term, lost by the smallest margin Tuesday of any Republican in the county.

"He's had tremendous support, and to know that he is personally endorsing me lends even more value to my campaign," Bogart said. "We share the same values. Public safety is our mission."

--Molly Moorhead, Times staff writer

[Last modified: Wednesday, May 26, 2010 11:34am]


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