Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Voters choose from inside to promote Latimer to head Hillsborough elections office

TAMPA — Democrat Craig Latimer won a comfortable victory Tuesday over Republican state Rep. Rich Glorioso in the race for Hillsborough County supervisor of elections.

With all precincts reporting, Latimer won with nearly 56 percent of the vote, a margin of more than 57,000 votes.

"I'm very excited," he said. "It's been great. I think it sends a message from the voters they like direction of the office. Four years ago we started to restore confidence in that office. ... It's been really rewarding."

Glorioso could not be reached to comment.

Both candidates vied to replace Earl Lennard, a former county schools superintendent, who took over the office after the 2009 death of Democrat Phyllis Busansky. Lennard is retiring.

Lennard and Busansky have been credited with stabilizing the Supervisor of Elections Office after the troubled tenure of elections chief Buddy Johnson.

Latimer came up through the ranks of law enforcement, spending 35 years with the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office. He supervised investigations of murders and serious crimes before retiring as a major in 2008.

Latimer joined the elections office as Busansky's chief of staff after he managed her election victory over Johnson. But upon Busansky's death, the Republican Lennard kept Latimer on as his own chief of staff.

That gave Latimer the bipartisan distinction of having worked for elections chiefs of both political parties.

Latimer built his campaign around the themes that he had a proven track record and helped restore confidence and integrity into the elections office.

Glorioso was a Plant City commissioner from 1998 to 2004 before his election to the state House. But he reached his term limit this year as he concluded his fourth term. Glorioso also served in the Air Force for 27 years, retiring as a colonel.

Glorioso tried to distinguish himself from Latimer by saying he had "leadership experience ... There's a big difference between a staff member and the leader of an organization," he said.

The usually low-profile supervisor of elections race took a controversial turn last month when Glorioso questioned the contribution of $7,550 by elections employees to Latimer.

Glorioso said he would have rejected the money, saying it left the perception workers could have been influenced to donate or were currying favor with their boss.

Latimer said the charge was baseless.

Voters choose from inside to promote Latimer to head Hillsborough elections office 11/06/12 [Last modified: Wednesday, November 7, 2012 12:33am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Editorial: Pinellas Construction Licensing Board should be abolished

    Editorials

    There are essentially two facts that need to be understood about the Pinellas County Construction Licensing Board: It is a one-of-a-kind agency in Florida without any accountability to the state or the county. And to be kind, for years it was run haphazardly as an independent fiefdom, with missing financial records, …

    The only way to restore faith and sanity to the process is to abolish the Pinellas County Construction Licensing Board and follow the lead of Hillsborough and other counties that utilize building departments and law enforcement to regulate contractors.
  2. 11 Pasco County schools get schedule changes to make up missed time from Irma

    Blogs

    First, the good news. Pasco County families won't see their Thanksgiving break shortened to make up time missed from school during Hurricane Irma. 

    Pasco County teachers welcomed back their students on Monday, after six days off for Hurricane Irma.
  3. Editorial: Immigration deal may be imperfect, but compromise should be encouraged

    Editorials

    It is obviously premature to congratulate President Donald Trump and congressional Democrats on finding an incremental immigration solution, but their willingness to discuss a deal for America's Dreamers is a good sign. Why is that? Because it has drawn howls of protest from the more extreme factions of both political …

  4. Four Largo city employees lose jobs for not working during Hurricane Irma

    Local Government

    LARGO — Four public works employees resigned or were fired because they didn't show up to work during Hurricane Irma.

    Four public works employees resigned or were fired because they didn't show up to work during Hurricane Irma. The employees, two of whom were fired and two resigned, said they decided to be with their families considering the magnitude of the storm. But City Manager Henry Schubert said Thursday most city employees are required to be present during an emergency. JIM DAMASKE   |   Times
  5. Aaron Hernandez lawyer: Brain showed 'severe' case of CTE

    Bucs

    BOSTON — Aaron Hernandez's lawyer says the former New England Patriots tight end's brain showed severe signs of the degenerative brain disease chronic traumatic encephalopathy.

    Aaron Hernandez's lawyer says the former New England Patriots tight end's brain showed severe signs of the degenerative brain disease chronic traumatic encephalopathy. [AP photo]