Republican incumbent Republican Blaise Ingoglia won an easy victory over his Democratic opponent Ramon Gutierrez in Tuesday's race for Florida House District 35.
He won 62 percent of the vote, according to preliminary results. That means a second two-year term for Ingoglia, who heads the Republican Party in both Hernando and Florida.
A native of Queens, N.Y., he has been an outspoken player in Hernando County politics for the last nine years since he headed up the movement against county government spending known as "Government Gone Wild" and spent $40,000 of his own money to unseat incumbent county commissioners a year later.
Ingoglia, 45, is a home builder by trade who was once a tournament poker player. He came to Hernando 20 years ago. His platform focused on helping "our families and small businesses in Florida remain prosperous in the face of an ever-growing and ever-intrusive federal government."
He could not be reached for comment.
Gutierrez, 64, has been a real estate broker, a stockbroker and an insurance salesman. He is a native of Havana, Cuba.
"My goal is to represent all of the citizens, not just a select few,'' Gutierrez said. "I was born in Cuba and have seen how cronyism, oppression and complacency can destroy families and a country.
"We must not allow this country to be taken over by a select few who promote only their personal interests while ignoring the best interests of the people they were elected to represent."
District 35 encompasses all of Hernando County, except for the northwest corner.
Contact Barbara Behrendt at email@example.com or (352) 848-1434.