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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Bob Buesing vs. Dana Young state Senate race in Tampa has statewide implications



One of the Democratic Party’s best chances this year to counter-balance the Republican tilt in the Florida Senate might be in District 18.

It’s a brand-new state Senate seat representing much of Tampa and western Hillsborough County. The product of a big legal fight under Florida’s Fair Districts amendment, it’s 37 percent Democrat, 35 percent Republican.

It has fewer black residents than the state average, but more Hispanics, Spanish-speakers and college graduates. Its voters twice went for President Barack Obama, but by thinner margins than elsewhere in Florida.

But even with a slight edge in party registration, picking up a seat here won’t be easy for Democrats, who have 14 state senators to the GOP’s 26.

That’s because District 18 doesn’t have an incumbent senator, but it does have Republican Dana Young. The House Majority Leader faces Democrat Bob Buesing, a prominent Tampa lawyer and childhood education advocate, and two no-party candidates, Joe Redner and Sheldon Upthegrove, in the Nov. 8 election.

For a look at a race with jousting over Medicaid expansion, guns and fracking, plus a wild card thrown in by Tampa's most widely known nude dance club owner, click here.

[Last modified: Friday, September 30, 2016 3:57pm]


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