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Deborah Tamargo re-elected as Hillsborough GOP chief

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

Deborah Tamargo has won re-election as chair of the Hillsborough County Republican Party.

Tamargo withstood a challenge from Jonny Torres, the second vice chairman of the party, winning 94-58 over Torres on Tuesday night at the party’s reorganization meeting at MOSI in North Tampa.

Torres ran an insurgent campaign against Tamargo, who was narrowly elected in 2014 over former chair Debbie Cox-Roush. He claimed party membership and interest had dropped in recent years, and that local candidates weren’t really helped by the REC in the most recent election cycle.

Tamargo challenged those assertions, and ultimately the rank and file voted to stand by her.

Other elected races were not contested: Jeff Lukens was unanimously re-elected first vice chair, and Bob Emerson was re-elected party treasurer.

Jeanne Webb was elected secretary.

Mitch Perry has been a reporter with Extensive Enterprises since November of 2014. Previously, he served as five years as the political editor of the alternative newsweekly Creative Loafing. He also was the assistant news director with WMNF 88.5 FM in Tampa from 2000-2009, and currently hosts MidPoint, a weekly talk show, on WMNF on Thursday afternoons. He began his reporting career at KPFA radio in Berkeley. He's a San Francisco native who has now lived in Tampa for 15 years and can be reached at mitch.perry@floridapolitics.com.

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