Bruce Rector will be Clearwater’s new Mayor; in the Gulfport City Council race, Thanos defeats Bixler

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Gulfport election day
Election Day in Gulfport. Tom Bixler is challenging incumbent April Thanos for city council. By Sean Kinane/WMNF News (19 March 2024).

Several municipalities in Pinellas County had elections yesterday. According to the Pinellas Supervisor of Elections website, voter turnout there was 29.8%.

In the race for Clearwater Mayor, Bruce Rector defeated Kathleen Beckman. Rector was a nonpartisan candidate endorsed by the Pinellas GOP. Republican-endorsed candidates also won two Clearwater City Council seats, Mike Mannino and Ryan Cotton.

A Republican-backed charter amendment to change Clearwater city election dates passed. The Tampa Bay Times reports that Republican Party of Florida Chair Evan Power called it a “clean sweep.”

But in Gulfport, the candidate endorsed by the Pinellas Democratic Party won a non-partisan race: incumbent April Thanos defeated Tom Bixler.

The Pinellas Democratic Party’s endorsed candidate also won a seat on Oldsmar City Council. Steve Graber won. As did Andrew Knapp for another Oldsmar Council seat.

Megan Zemaitis won the race for Town of Kenneth City Mayor. She was endorsed by the Pinellas Democratic Party.

Diantha Schear won as Mayor of the Town of Indian Shores.

There were also city council races decided in Pinellas Park, Safety Harbor, Indian Rocks Beach and Treasure Island. You can see those results, as well as several cities’ charter amendments, on the Pinellas Supervisor of Elections website.

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