Being a woman in politics was not easy in East Pasco County Tuesday night.
It was man against woman in races in Dade City, St. Leo and Zephyrhills, and in each case, every woman — including two incumbents — lost.
Scott Black easily retained his city commission seat against challenger Angelica Herrera in Dade City, according to unofficial results from the Pasco County elections office. He won 570 votes — a little more than 80 percent — to make easy work of Herrera.
Black out-raised Herrera more than 3-to-1 leading up to Tuesday’s election, and was forced to defend his record on a variety of issues, including the expansion of a sewage treatment plant into a residential neighborhood.
The vote was much, much closer in St. Leo, where longtime commissioner Donna DeWitt lost her seat to Lake Jovita resident Raphael “Ray” Davis by just four votes — 59-55. However, Davis’ overall win was by 3.5 percent, as residents in part of Lake Jovita inside the town’s limits create more assurances they can separate from St. Leo if a bill in Tallahassee doesn’t go through.
DeWitt, who has served on the town commission since 1997, chose not to do any fundraising in her re-election bid.
In Zephyrhills, Councilwoman Jodi Wilkeson lost her seat to former Zephyrhills High School principal Alan Knight. Although the fundraising between the two was neck-and-neck throughout the short race, Knight’s victory was not as close, winning 57 percent of the vote, or 481 ballots cast in his favor.
Election results won’t be finalized until Thursday, according to a spokeswoman with elections supervisor Brian Corley’s office.