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The staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Sharpe pitches tax to anti-tax group; Caton calls voters stupid



Hillsborough County Commissioner Mark Sharpe had a rough go of it when he tried to defend a proposed sales tax increase for transit to the anti-big government group Tampa 912 Project on Tuesday night.

He got heckled and threatened with losing his job when he faces re-election in November.

"I didn’t think when I walked in here that I was going to be carried out on anyone’s shoulders,” he told the group of 150 or so.

Sharpe squared off against Florida Family Association Executive Director David Caton, an early spokesman for those opposed to the transit tax. He had most of the applause lines, but made a curious observation at one point.

He said if the issue makes the ballot, it will likely be passed by voters, who will be duped by the area's newspaper editorials in support of the initiative.

"There are a lot of stupid voters out there who will fall prey to the Tampa Tribune and St. Pete Times," he said.

To see further coverage of the debate, go here.

Bill Varian, Times staff writer



[Last modified: Wednesday, May 26, 2010 12:23pm]


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