U.S. Rep C. W. Bill Young was re-elected Tuesday, making him the longest-serving member of Congress in Florida.
Young, R-Indian Rocks Beach, easily defeated Henry Green, a Democrat who moved to Pinellas County three years ago.
"Obviously, I'm very, very happy with the strong support that the people I've represented for many years have expressed today," said Young, who appeared at a Republican party in Clearwater wearing a denim shirt that said "U.S. House of Representatives."
Because the Republican Party appeared poised to retain control of Congress, and Bill Clinton was headed for a return trip to the White House, "there's going to need to be a realization that the two parties need to work together," Young said.
Young, 65, had campaigned on his experience and the need to bring a federal courthouse to St. Petersburg.
Young has served in Congress since 1970. Before that, he spent 10 years as a state Senator. He has said he would not seek re-election in 2000.
He has spent several years specializing in the area of defense appropriations, and when the Republican Party gained a majority in the U.S. House in 1994, he became chairman of the defense appropriations subcommittee.
He demonstrated his clout in that area while campaigning by appearing at a naming ceremony for a B-2 Stealth Bomber in Tampa.
Green, 39, who resigned as pastor of Heritage Community Church in St. Petersburg to run for Congress, had portrayed Young as a "failed representative."
He hammered Young for voting for the Republicans' plan last year to reduce the growth of Medicare spending. But Young said it was an attempt to save Medicare.