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Bill McBride Dies, Former Democratic Candidate for Governor


December 24, 2012 | WMFE - Bill McBride, who ran unsuccessfully for governor 10 years ago, died Saturday in North Carolina. His wife, Alex Sink, also ran for governor in 2010 and narrowly lost to Governor Rick Scott. McBride, a prominent Tampa-area attorney, died of a heart attack on a Christmas trip with his family.

Bill McBride was the son of a TV repairman who joined the Marines, was decorated for valor in Vietnam and began his civic life right after law school. By the time he became managing partner of Holland and Knight, the state's largest law firm, McBride had amassed a lot of power and influence.

He ran for governor in 2002 and defeated former US Attorney General Janet Reno in the Democratic primary but lost the general election to Governor Jeb Bush, who was seeking a second term. McBride, for all his friendly manner and common touch with ordinary folks, lost to Bush by 13 points.

After the election, McBride's wife, Alex Sink rose in prominence.

She was elected Chief Financial Officer of the state before she ran for governor but lost to Rick Scott by a margin of les than one percent. Sink is considered a possible Democratic contender to run against Scott in 2014 but she said last week that she hasn’t decided whether to try another gubernatorial bid.  

McBride and Sink lived in Thonotosassa, outside of Tampa.

Family members said that McBride, who had heart surgery in 2003, collapsed with a fatal heart attack during a family gathering in Mt. Airy, North Carolina.

Sink told reporters she wants her husband to be remembered as a champion for civil rights.

Bill McBride was 67.

 

 

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