Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Sean Shaw elected to House District 61 after narrow primary victory

District 61 winner Sean Shaw

District 61 winner Sean Shaw

TAMPA — Attorney and former state insurance consumer advocate Sean Shaw narrowly won the State House District 61 Democratic primary Tuesday, giving him the seat outright since no Republicans filed to run for this safe Democratic seat.

Shaw, the son of the late Florida Supreme Court Justice Leander Shaw Jr., received nearly 43 percent of the vote. Businesswoman and activist Dianne "Ms. Dee" Hart came in second with 41 percent and environmental engineer and radio host Walter L. Smith was a distant third with 15 percent.

The seat covers much of Tampa's urban core including Ybor City, Tampa Heights, Seminole Heights and East Tampa. It became open after Ed Narain opted to run for the state senate. Shaw failed in an earlier bid for the seat in 2014 losing to Narain in a contentious race.

"I'm elated," said Shaw, who celebrated his victory with campaign volunteers at the Fodder and Shine bar in Seminole Heights. "The people of District 61 bestowed on me the greatest honor possible: their confidence that I will go to Tallahassee and do exactly what I said I would do."

Those campaign pledges included pushing for Medicaid expansion, more spending on education and a higher minimum wage. He is also an opponent of the Tampa Bay Express highway expansion plan that includes demolition of homes alongside Interstate-275.

Shaw, who served as Florida's Insurance Consumer Advocate for two years ending in 2010, said his campaign's strong ground game may have made the difference in the narrow victory. Volunteers manned phone banks and knocked on thousands of doors, Shaw said.

He also proved a handy fundraiser bringing in about $107,000, more than his two opponents combined. Former Chief Financial Officer and 2010 gubernatorial candidate Alex Sink was among his contributors.

Contact Christopher O'Donnell at codonnell@tampabay.com or (813) 226-3446. Follow @codonnell_Times.

Sean Shaw elected to House District 61 after narrow primary victory 08/30/16 [Last modified: Tuesday, August 30, 2016 9:55pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Bealls and West Marine to join Pollo Tropical at redeveloped Kmart site in Clearwater

    Economic Development

    CLEARWATER — The long-vacant shopping plaza on Gulf-to-Bay Boulevard, formerly home to Kmart, is nearing completion, bringing a handful of well-known retailers to the area.

    The long-vacant shopping plaza on Gulf-to-Bay Boulevard, formerly home to Kmart, is nearing completion. .JIM DAMASKE   |   Times
  2. Dunedin approves contract approved for new city manager

    Local Government

    DUNEDIN — City officials finalized the last step in the process to bring home their next manager.

    Jennifer Bramley, 52, is the new Dunedin city manager.
  3. Aquarium curator Carol Audette touches noses with Snooty the manatee in 2001 at the South Florida Museum. Snooty was 53 then. [Times 2001]
  4. Florida Congressmen to attend White House ceremony honoring officers who responded to baseball shooting

    Blogs

    WASHINGTON - Florida Reps. Dennis Ross and Ron DeSantis will be at the White House today as President Trump awards the Public Safety Medal of Valor to officers who responded to the baseball field shooting last month.

  5. Justice Department says civil rights law does not protect gay people

    Working Life

    The Department of Justice has filed court papers arguing that a major federal civil rights law does not protect employees from discrimination based on sexual orientation in a case now being considered by a New York appeals court.

    Attorney General Jeff Sessions boards his plane at Andrews Air Force Base on Thursday. Sessions is traveling to El Salvador to meet with local leaders and discuss their efforts to fight gangs like MS-13. [Pablo Martinez Monsivais | Associated Press]