Andrew Gillum Bucks Projections, Is Florida Democrats' Choice For Governor

Posted August 30, 2018

The upset victory by Democrat Andrew Gillum, 39, the mayor of Tallahassee, Florida, was the most notable of a slate of party primary results on Tuesday to decide candidates for the midterm election.

Progressive Andrew Gillum and Republican Ron DeSantis won their respective party primaries Tuesday evening to replace Rick Scott as Florida governor, setting up a gubernatorial battle this November that will likely be seen as a referendum on President Donald Trump.

The DeSantis campaign clarified in an email that his comments were directed at Gillum's policies, not the candidate himself.

Less than 12 hours after Andrew Gillum's primary win, Ron DeSantis referred to him as "articulate" and said Florida shouldn't "monkey up" the state. "To characterize it as anything else is absurd", Stephen Lawson, communications director for the DeSantis campaign, said in response to the backlash.

On Wednesday morning, President Trump tweeted his support for DeSantis and described Gillum as a "failed socialist mayor" who had allowed crime to flourish.

Tallahassee Andrew Gillum, who would be Florida's first black governor, told CNN Wednesday that he wants to "build a Florida that makes room for all of us and not just some of us".

Gillum did well in debates, often receiving the most applause, but the FBI is investigating Tallahassee city hall for corruption.

In the Republican primary, DeSantis beat out Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam, who had seemingly built up the run for governor his entire adult life after being elected to office as a 22-year-old.

"Congressman Ron DeSantis is a special person who has done an incredible job", Trump tweeted Monday.

Gillum came from behind in a crowded and diverse Democratic field. He has the backing of Sen. That's despite Democrat Sinema's lead - so far - in general-election polls over Republican McSally.

- Bakari Sellers (@Bakari_Sellers) August 29, 2018To say that @AndrewGillum - Florida's first #AfricanAmerican nominee for governor - got where he did bc he "performed" better and that electing him would "monkey this up" is dogwhistle racism and defines the @GOP in the age of @realDonaldTrump - #Florida must & will reject this!

McSally is a congresswoman who defeated two other Republicans Tuesday night to win the party's nomination in the race to succeed retiring GOP Sen. Former Rep. Gwen Graham (daughter of Bob Graham, the former Florida governor and senator) and groups supporting her spent $12.5 million.

Democratic nominee for Florida governor Andrew Gillum isn't anxious about the possible influence President Donald Trump will have on his race against Republican Ron DeSantis in the general election this November.

Gillum won as an unabashed progressive who backed "Medicare for all", impeaching Trump and standing up to the National Rifle Association. His opponents didn't go after what could prove to be Gillum's biggest vulnerability, ongoing investigations into possible corruption in Tallahassee government, where he is mayor.

He won every county with a major city in Florida except for St. Petersburg inPinellas County, including huge margins in Jacksonville and victories in what were considered Levine's home base of Miami-Dade and Broward counties.