Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Pinellas Park winners were upbeat, loved the city

The results of Tuesday's elections

For mayor

Incumbent Bill Mischler was re-elected with 3,174 votes over Jan Macumber's 545 votes.

Seat 3 incumbent Rick Butler defeated Marshall Cook 2,967 to 601

Seat 4

Jerry Mullins 1,006
Mary Brennan 895
Patti Johnson 863
Ed Kosinski 390
Randy Heine 352
Trish Macfarlane 160
Source: Pinellas County Supervisor of Elections

PINELLAS PARK — If you want to win a seat on the City Council here, you have to push a positive message and talk about your love for the city.

That's something the three top vote-getters in Tuesday's election did very well, said Jerry Garner, who helped winner Jerry Mullins squeak out a 111-vote victory over former state Rep. Mary Brennan.

The third-place finisher, Patti Johnson, was only 32 votes behind Brennan. The other three candidates in the race, Ed Kosinski, Randy Heine and Trish Macfarlane, trailed far behind. The closest, Kosinski, was 473 votes behind Johnson.

"I was really surprised to see how close it was," Garner said Thursday.

The Mullins campaign knew from the outset that Brennan would be a heavy contender. Brennan is well known and well liked in the community. While serving in the Legislature, she helped pass laws to benefit the elderly, and people remember that, Garner said. She also had the support of Patricia Bailey-Snook, the longtime council member who was vacating the seat.

Campaign strategists first realized Johnson was a threat when they heard her speak during a candidates forum. Johnson did things right, Garner said. She talked of her love for Pinellas Park and of finding ways to help the city face the future, particularly in view of budget issues from the fallout of Amendment 1 and the poor economy.

A couple of things gave Mullins the edge that pushed him to victory, Garner said. One was his long-standing, hands-on history of helping groups in the community, from Little League to the Thunderbirds to People Helping People. The other was the decision to own up to a problematic past before anyone else brought it up and to spin it as youthful mistakes amply corrected.

"I think that that helped him, gave him credibility," Garner said.

Mullins agreed that those things helped put him over the top. The decision to be upfront with arrests and a misdemeanor DUI conviction was his, he said. Mullins said that while not proud of his background, he did not want people to think he was lying to them by hiding it. So he put the story on his Web site and he did not duck media questions.

But Mullins' victory was no landslide. He got 27.4 percent of the vote, which meant almost three-quarters of those voting wanted someone else. And the vast majority of the city's registered voters gave the election a pass. But with six candidates, it's unlikely anyone could have gotten more than 50 percent. And turnout for municipal elections is notoriously low. But the fact is, those 111 set Pinellas Park's course for the next four years.

Date of

Number of registered votersNumber who votedPercent

March 6,199021,7894,63021.25

March 3, 199219,6681,99210.13

Sept. 1, 199220,8905,76727.61

March 1, 199420,7773,68717.75

March 5, 199626,1254,74218.15

March 3, 199828,6483,45512.06

March 7, 2000 29,1421,5595.35

March 5, 200226,3082,3709.01

March 26, 200226,3142,1378.12

March 9, 200429,2934,31314.41

March 7, 200628,6973,79013.21

March 11, 200828,8333,73612.96

*Special election **Runoff election ***Unofficial numbers

There was no 1988 election.

>>fast facts

Voter turnout in Pinellas Park

municipal elections through the years

Turnout for municipal elections is notoriously low. Here's a near 20-year

history of voter turnout in Pinellas Park.

>>fast facts

Pinellas Park winners were upbeat, loved the city 03/15/08 [Last modified: Monday, March 17, 2008 1:54pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Robert Pattinson is better than 'Twilight.' 'Good Time' proves it




    Don't judge actors by the books they cover on screen. It appears truer with each performance that two of our finest got their starts with the Twilight franchise.

    Robert Pattinson hooks viewers in Good Time, an inventive crime story.
  2. Deputies: Man feared other man was going to "steal his girlfriend" before armed assault



    Deputies: Rifle pulled in fight over girlfriend

  3. Largo police investigating U.S. 19 crash that killed woman, 34


    LARGO — Traffic homicide investigators are looking into a crash Wednesday morning that killed a woman and closed the southbound lanes of U.S. 19 for a few hours.

  4. Harvey regenerates into tropical depression, sets aim on Texas coastline


    The system moving toward Texas has regenerated into Tropical Depression Harvey, prompting storm surge and hurricane watches on portions of the Lone Star State's coast, according to the National Hurricane …

    [National Hurricane Center]
  5. Top things to do in Tampa Bay this week: SNL's Pete Davidson, Rodeo Fest, Disney Halloween party


    USF ROUND-UP: Pete Davidson

    Saturday Night Live star Pete Davidson will headline this year's University of South Florida Round-Up Comedy Show, a back-to-school tradition at USF. Davidson revealed in March the reason he had "kinda been missing" for a spell last season on SNL was …

    Characters parade down Main Street, U.S.A in Mickey’s Boo-to You Halloween Parade during Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party at Magic Kingdom.