1. Florida Politics

Tampa Mayor’s Race 2019: Jane Castor easily defeats David Straz

The Tampa mayor’s race is over. The Tampa Bay Times covered it from the start.
Tampa mayoral candidate David Straz, left, was defeated Tuesday by former police chief and now Tampa Mayor-elect Jane Castor, right. This photo is from their April 23 televised debate at the Tampa Theatre. [ALLIE GOULDING   |   Times]
Tampa mayoral candidate David Straz, left, was defeated Tuesday by former police chief and now Tampa Mayor-elect Jane Castor, right. This photo is from their April 23 televised debate at the Tampa Theatre. [ALLIE GOULDING | Times]
Published Mar. 2, 2019
Updated Apr. 24, 2019

Catch up on all the coverage of the 2019 Tampa city elections, including a historic mayoral race, from reporter Charlie Frago and the Times staff:

TAMPA MAYOR’S RACE: Jane Castor wins big over David Straz

CITY COUNCIL DISTRICT 1: Joseph Citro scores easy win in Tampa City Council District 1 over Walter L. Smith II

CITY COUNCIL DISTRICT 3: Dingfelder heads back to Tampa City Council in big District 3 win

CITY COUNCIL DISTRICT 5: Orlando Gudes wins close Tampa City Council District 5 race

LIVE BLOG: Get the latest from Election Day

ELECTION RESULTS: Runoff results for all races

Follow Tampa Bay Times Tampa city hall reporter Charlie Frago on Twitter:

The Runoff: Jane Castor will face David Straz in April 23 runoff for Tampa mayor

One more day until Tampa picks its next mayor (April 22)

Final debate in Tampa mayor’s race canceled at last minute (April 19)

New Straz proposal promises ethics reform (April 18)

Straz releases ad saying he won’t accept donations greater than $500. Except he has. At least 12 times. (April 17)

Jane Castor might be Tampa’s next mayor. Her partner, Ana Cruz, is a lobbyist. Does it matter? (April 15)

Jane Castor in control: Two new polls show big leads for the former police chief in Tampa mayor’s race (April 16)

In Tampa mayor debate, Jane Castor scoffs as David Straz attacks crime stats (April 11)

Second ex-Tampa cop accuses Jane Castor of manipulating crime stats, offers another anecdote (April 8)

Tampa mayor race: Public servant Jane Castor vs. job creator David Straz in first TV debate (April 5)

Castor endorses Castor: They’re not related, but they have more in common than a name (April 5)

‘Passing on the torch’: Former Tampa mayors endorse Jane Castor (April 3)

David Straz accuses Jane Castor of lying about her record on crime, but his numbers don’t add up (April 2)

Jane Castor could make history as Tampa Bay’s first openly gay mayor (March 28)

Jane Castor and David Straz top $5 million mark in Tampa mayor’s race (March 30)

David Straz’s foundation owns a stake in a bank on a Caribbean island with a ‘problematic’ financial reputation. Does it matter? (March 28)

Solo Act: Jane Castor is going to mayoral forums; David Straz isn’t (March 26)

Jane Castor defends her record as Tampa police chief (March 22)

Any given day, it might be our last day’ (March 22)

Straz says he won’t take $160k mayoral salary. Castor: I wouldn’t either if I drove a Bentley. (March 21)

David Straz: Fatal Tampa police shooting in 2014 may have prompted cover-up (March 19)

● From William March: After outcry, Straz campaign returns debate tickets to Bay News 9. (March 19)

That’s no whopper David Straz is telling. The millionaire candidate loves his Burger King. (March 19)

Jane Castor soaks up the love at Tiger Bay (March 15)

Jane Castor, David Straz tangle over needs of Tampa’s black community (March 14)

David Straz agrees to three debates. Jane Castor wants at least five more. (March 14)

What’s the strategy in the Tampa mayoral race? Can David Straz win by avoiding debates? (March 11)

David Straz’s path to victory in the Tampa mayoral race? ‘It’s not a hill, it’s a mountain.’ (March 10)

David Straz smashed spending records to make Tampa’s mayoral runoff. Did he get his money’s worth? (March 9)

Former Tampa police chief Jane Castor faces philanthropist David Straz in the race to become Tampa's next mayor. [Times files]

The race

David Straz has yet to commit to any mayoral debates. The first one is Monday (March 8)

Harry Cohen endorses Jane Castor in Tampa mayor’s race (March 8)

Bob Buckhorn backs his former police chief Jane Castor in race for mayor (Mach 6)

Jane Castor will face David Straz in April 23 runoff (March 5)

Was it a smear or an honest mistake? David Straz mailers roil final days of Tampa mayor’s race (March 1)

David Straz is spending heavily in black neighborhoods. Will it help him become Tampa’s next mayor? (Feb. 28)

City Council chairman Frank Reddick says he is not interested in being deputy mayor (Feb. 27)

Could the Republican vote swing the Tampa mayor’s race? (Feb. 26)

Bob Buckhorn irked at David Straz flyer that reads like a mayoral endorsement (Feb. 26)

Some Tampa mayoral candidates say city is too clubby, too controlled by ‘Good Old Boy’ network (Feb. 25)

Latino vote up for grabs in Tampa mayor’s race (Feb. 23)

How many Tampa mayoral forums are too many? Depends on whom you ask (Feb. 16)

The candidates

Tampa mayoral candidate and former police chief Jane Castor. [BRONTE WITTPENN | Times]

Jane Castor

1. Jane Castor kicks off mayoral run: ‘We are Tampa Strong’ (May 17, 2018)

2. Jane Castor gets police union nod in Tampa mayor’s race (Jan. 24,)

3. Tampa’s mayoral candidates go after Jane Castor, and each other (Jan. 19)

4. Tampa mayoral candidate and former police chief Jane Castor was incorrect on homicide totals and murder spike (Jan. 30)

5. Jane Castor has big lead in Tampa’s mayor’s race, according to survey by St. Pete Polls (Feb. 5)

Tampa mayoral candidate, retired banker and philanthropist David Straz. [JAMES BORCHUCK | Times]

David Straz

1. Philanthropist David Straz joins growing field in Tampa mayor’s race (May 7, 2018)

2. Straz kicks off campaign saying he’ll shake up city government (Sept. 8, 2018)

3. Yes, Tampa mayoral candidate David Straz is very, very rich (Jan. 16)

4. David Straz says city department rife with ‘graft and corruption’ but isn’t talking to authorities (Jan. 25)

5. Straz calls for investigation of Tampa Bay Lightning owner Jeff Vinik’s influence in Tampa (Feb. 11)

Other key races

City Council District 1

City Council District 2

City Council District 3

City Council District 4

City Council District 5

City Council District 6

City Council District 7

Tampa City Charter: Here are all 18 proposed Charter amendments, explained


  1. “My body, my choice” was the rallying cry on the anniversary of Roe v. Wade in the state Capitol, where abortion rights activists decried a fast-tracked bill that would raise the bar for minors seeking abortions. (AP Photo/Aileen Perilla) [AILEEN PERILLA  |  AP]
    Abortion supporters worry about Florida’s move toward parental consent and what may follow.
  2. Democratic presidential candidate, former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg speaks at the ​U.S. Conference of Mayors' Winter Meeting, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky) [PATRICK SEMANSKY  |  AP]
    It’s also the first visit by any Democratic contender this year
  3. Jimmy Patronis had been appointed to the state’s Public Service Commission by Gov. Scott.
    FDLE cited a ‘potential conflict,’ Leon County State Attorney Jack Campbell said.
  4. Gov. Ron DeSantis. [STEVE CANNON  |  AP]
    Florida students will read more classical literature and learn math differently, according to summary documents.
  5. Florida House Speaker José Oliva made hospital deregulation one of his top priorities. [SCOTT KEELER | Tampa Bay Times]
    Speaker José Oliva slammed pharmaceutical companies in his opening day speech, but a bill to place $100 caps on co-payments for insulin will not pass this year. In fact, it won’t even get a hearing.
  6. The Florida Supreme Court, Wednesday, May 1, 2019. [SCOTT KEELER  |  Tampa Bay Times]
    Judge Renatha Francis has not been a member of the Florida Bar for 10 years.
  7. State Rep. Adam Hattersley, D-Riverview, speaks before volunteers with the gun control advocacy group Moms Demand Action outside the Florida Capitol on Thursday, Jan. 23, 2020. [[LAWRENCE MOWER | Tampa Bay Times]]
    Like it has since the Parkland massacre, the gun debate is growing fierce in Tallahassee. But there are some significant changes this year.
  8. West Palm Beach Mayor Keith James talks with his Director of Communications Kathleen Walter while going over the state of the city address in his office at the City of West Palm Beach municipal building in West Palm Beach, Florida on Wednesday, January 15, 2020.  [OCTAVIO JONES  |  Times]
    West Palm Beach Mayor Keith James leads a city about the same size as Buttigieg’s South Bend. Here’s what his day looks like. Is this presidential experience?
  9. The Florida Supreme Court, Wednesday, May 1, 2019. [SCOTT KEELER  |  Tampa Bay Times]
    “Death is indeed different,” wrote the lone dissenting justice. “This Court has taken a giant step backward."
  10. State Rep. Erin Grall, R-Vero Beach, presents legislation to create a new chapter of Florida law dedicated to parents' rights when dealing with government and other agencies, during a committee meeting Jan. 23, 2020. [The Florida Channel]
    Parents have been marginalized by bureaucracy, and need to be empowered in law, sponsor Rep. Erin Grall says.