As he was busy running his first presidential election, Pasco Supervisor of Elections Brian Corley kept one eye on the steady lead he held in the polls Tuesday night.
"It was so humbling to be appointed by the governor," Corley said. "But to be validated by the people means more than words."
In the race for the supervisor of elections job, Corley was the winner after all the precincts reported.
"I think statistically, it would be difficult to overcome this point spread," his opponent Pat Carroll said from her home in Wesley Chapel, before the full tally was in. "I'm not conceding, but I'm not optimistic."
Corley was appointed to the elections supervisor position in January 2007 by Gov. Charlie Crist as a replacement for Kurt Browning, whom Crist selected as his secretary of state.
Over the past several months, Corley and Carroll, a local attorney who served two years on the Attleboro, Mass., City Council in 1980s, ran fairly clean campaigns.
Corley pointed at holes in her voting record. Carroll questioned some of his personal financial decisions.
While Corley was ahead in contributions, raising $24,981 to Carroll's $20,943, Carroll had an advantage of time.
Early voting kept Corley busy during the final stage of his campaign. He relied on volunteers to spread his political message.
Carroll was able to shake hands and talk to voters at booths set up at the Rattlesnake Festival and other area events.
Some of the voters polled outside the First Presbyterian Church and First Baptist Church in Dade City said that Corley did a good job as the current supervisor of elections, but most people were more concerned with the presidential election.
"I just felt like there were more important things this time around than the supervisor of elections," said Shaquandra Howell, 26, an instructional assistant at Cox Elementary School.
Carroll had hoped a large outpouring of voters supporting Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama would vote along party lines in local races.