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Rooney captures GOP nod in Congressional District 19 primary

By Staff | Aug 30, 2016

Francis Rooney

Francis Rooney may never have run for office before, but GOP voters casting ballots in the District 19 Congressional primary seemed to embrace his message enough to trust him with holding the party flag in the Nov. 8 general election.

Rooney was a big winner Tuesday, garnering more than half the vote in the three-way battle that also included Dan Bongino and Chauncey Goss.

Rooney will face Democrat Robert M. Neeld and write-ins Tim Rossano and David Byron in the general election for the seat held by Rep. Curt Clawson who did not seek re-election.

As the area is a Republican stronghold, chances are strong that Rooney will win that seat.

Rooney, who was a major fundraiser for GOP candidates before starting his own campaign, won 52.72 percent of the vote, easily defeating Sanibel councilman Chauncey Goss, who had a hair under 30 percent, and Dan Bongino, a distant third at 17.39 percent.

Rooney’s campaign focused on building a strong military and defeating terrorism around the globe. He also had the financial resources. He was able to use nearly $4 million of his own money to flood television stations with ads and outspent his opposition by a wide margin.