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Anderson takes Republican primary for state House District 45

By Times staff

© St. Petersburg Times, published September 11, 2002


Relying on his Pinellas stronghold, Tom Anderson won the Republican primary for state House of Representatives District 45, which is nearly evenly divided in population among Pasco and Pinellas counties.

Relying on his Pinellas stronghold, Tom Anderson won the Republican primary for state House of Representatives District 45, which is nearly evenly divided in population among Pasco and Pinellas counties.

Anderson pulled away from Pasco resident John Legg as more Pinellas votes came in late Tuesday night. Legg won Pasco County with a 3-2 ratio, but Anderson, the mayor of Dunedin, held a greater than 2-1 lead in Pinellas County stronghold that never wavered as votes were counted.

"I'm delighted," Anderson said. "We worked hard."

District 45 is nearly evenly split population-wise between Pasco and Pinellas counties, which made voter turnout critical for both men. Anderson said he would have been "very happy" to take 45 percent of the Pasco vote. As it was, he took 40 percent, but his lead in Pinellas proved too much for Legg to overcome.

Both men said their strategy during the election was to campaign on the other candidate's home turf. They agreed during the campaign that serving two population centers like Dunedin/Palm Harbor and Holiday/New Port Richey will be difficult for whomever represents the district.

Anderson will face Democrat Kevin Jensen, the former spokesman for Palm Harbor Fire Rescue, and John Doherty, a Libertarian candidate and Hudson computer technician, in the general election in November.

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