U.S. Congressman Vern Buchanan, R-Longboat Key, won the right Tuesday evening to vie for a third term in the 13th Congressional District, defeating Republican challenger Don Baldauf soundly in the primary by 49,290 votes.
Buchanan discovered that 83.5% of the voters, or 61,476 of his constituents, cast a vote for him. The Longboat Key resident will now face the Rev. James T. Golden, the Democrat, in the Nov. 2 general election.
Buchanan learned that he had 84% of the vote at the Republican Party of Sarasota headquarters on Tamiami Trail and spoke to a standing-room-only crowd of 75 supporters at 8 p.m. Tuesday.
“I still remember when I only received 31% of the vote in my first primary in 2006,” Buchanan said. “So, I’m very thankful for this.”
While the end of his second term is coming to a close, the Sarasota businessman still maintains his platform hasn’t changed since he was first elected in November 2006.
“I’m not a career politician,” Buchanan said Tuesday night. “I’m a 30-year businessman.”
A strong proponent of town-hall meetings, Buchanan maintains that the economy and creating jobs are his main priorities.
“I have done a lot of town-hall meetings and people are mad as hell,” Buchanan said. “My focus is on jobs and the economy.”
Buchanan said he is optimistic that this fall’s election will turn the tide in favor of the Republicans.
“The current economic policies are frankly not working,” Buchanan said. “We need real change and I think we’re going to get it this November. There is too much at stake.”
Buchanan has also been a strong vocal opponent of offshore drilling this year. Baldauf strongly supported offshore drilling.
Contact Kurt Schultheis at email@example.com.
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