Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Bunting could bat 1.000 in his two races

Bill Bunting staved off a mutiny Tuesday from opponents who tried to oust him as the local Republican Party chairman. And he likely has clinched a new post as Pasco's GOP state committeeman.

Bunting, 67, had a narrow lead Tuesday night over John Renke II, who has held the state committeeman post since 1994.

By December, Bunting must choose between being party chairman or state committeeman. He said he probably would lean toward the committeeman job.

"I feel like the people will decide it — I've worked hard. … but negative campaigning is something that I didn't do and I won't do," said Bunting, alluding to the fliers this campaign that mentioned his arrests for petty crimes nearly 50 years ago.

A GOP power struggle led Bunting to challenge Renke, 62, for the party leadership position. Renke declined to comment Tuesday night.

In the meantime, Bunting easily turned back a challenge by eight neighbors who tried to oust him and his wife, Ann, from their Precinct 118 posts. In order to remain as chairman of the local Republican Party, Bunting must be a precinct member of the Republican executive committee.

Both Buntings — who said their critics had given the local party little help — were clearly atop the leading four vote-getters in their precinct, necessary to keeping their posts.

Bunting had tried to get those challengers and 19 others booted from the ballot.

But that contest paled compared to the Bunting-Renke power struggle. Bunting said Renke didn't work hard enough. Renke said he refused to go along with Bunting on political decisions.

Their campaign turned unusually feisty, with a recorded call for Bunting by Gov. Charlie Crist, an anonymous attack mailer against Bunting and a tough mailing by Renke last weekend.

David DeCamp can be reached at [email protected] or (800) 333-7505, ext. 6232.

Bunting could bat 1.000 in his two races 08/26/08 [Last modified: Tuesday, September 2, 2008 1:56pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Review: Kenny Loggins, Michael McDonald team up to cool down the Clearwater Jazz Holiday

    Blogs

    A cool breeze swept through Coachman Park Saturday night. Couple of them, actually.

    Kenny Loggins performed at the Clearwater Jazz Holiday on Oct. 21, 2017.
  2. No. 16 USF hangs on at Tulane, off to first 7-0 start

    College

    NEW ORLEANS — After half a season of mismatches, USF found itself in a grudge match Saturday night.

    USF quarterback Quinton Flowers (9) runs for a touchdown against Tulane during the first half of an NCAA college football game in New Orleans, La., Saturday, Oct. 21, 2017. (AP Photo/Derick E. Hingle) LADH103
  3. Lightning buries Penguins (w/video)

    Lightning Strikes

    TAMPA — Ryan Callahan spent a lot of time last season rehabilitating his injured hip alongside Steven Stamkos, who was rehabbing a knee after season-ending surgery. During those hours, Callahan noticed two things about Stamkos: his hunger and his excitement to return this season.

    Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Slater Koekkoek (29) advances the puck through the neutral zone during the first period of Saturday???‚??„?s (10/21/17) game between the Tampa Bay Lightning and the Pittsburgh Penguins at Amalie Arena in Tampa.
  4. Spain planning to strip Catalonia of its autonomy

    World

    BARCELONA, Spain — The escalating confrontation over Catalonia's independence drive took its most serious turn Saturday as Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy of Spain announced he would remove the leadership of the restive region and initiate a process of direct rule by the central government in Madrid.

    Demonstrators in Barcelona protest the decision to take control of Catalonia to derail the independence movement.
  5. Funeral held for soldier at center of political war of words (w/video)

    Nation

    COOPER CITY — Mourners remembered not only a U.S. soldier whose combat death in Africa led to a political fight between President Donald Trump and a Florida congresswoman but his three comrades who died with him.

    The casket of Sgt. La David T. Johnson of Miami Gardens, who was killed in an ambush in Niger. is wheeled out after a viewing at the Christ The Rock Church, Friday, Oct. 20, 2017  in Cooper City, Fla. (Pedro Portal/Miami Herald via AP) FLMIH102