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Maggard Wins Pasco Special Election; Tremblay New Mayor Of Port Richey

Florida House District Map
Map of Florida House District 38

Republicans increased their lead in the Florida House of Representatives Tuesday night, as Randy Maggard defeated Democrat Kelly Smith in a special election in Pasco County.

Maggard, of Dade City, works as a vice president for a discount appliance chain. House District 38 includes most of eastern Pasco, including Wesley Chapel, Dade City and Zephyrhills.

Maggard got 56% of the vote to Smith's 44%. The Pasco Supervisor of Elections office reported turnout was about 15% among registered voters.

The legislative seat became vacant after Daniel Burgess Jr. was appointed Executive Director of the Department of Veterans’ Affairs by Governor DeSantis in January.

Along with the win in a special election in the Panhandle, House Republicans increased their majority to 73 seats.

State Rep. Chris Sprowls, R-Palm Harbor, said in a prepared statement: "We are thrilled to welcome soon-to-be Representative (Jason) Shoaf and Representative Maggard to the Florida House of Representatives.  They ran on conservative, common sense ideas that clearly resonated with the voters, and I know they will both be strong advocates for their communities."

Also, Scott Tremblay won the race for Port Richey mayor, getting 28% of the vote in a five-person race.

Scott Tremblay
Credit Twitter
Scott Tremblay

The seat has been open since February, when Mayor Dale Massad was arrested on charges of practicing medicine without a license. He also faces charges for shooting at deputies when they attempted to serve a search warrant at his home.

Massad's replacement, Terrence Rowe,  was then arrested after deputies said he was caught on a jailhouse phone call conspiring with Massad to obstruct the investigation.


Steve Newborn is a WUSF reporter and producer at WUSF covering environmental issues and politics in the Tampa Bay area.
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