Not even an early-morning insult from Donald Trump could wipe the smile from Andrew Gillum’s face as he embraced his first full day as the newly elected and rather unexpected Democratic party candidate for Florida governor.
Just hours after sending a lightning bolt to the heart of the Sunshine State’s political establishment with his historic upset victory over bigger-spending rivals, Gillum, the 39-year-old mayor of Tallahassee who is vying to be the first African American in the governor’s mansion, was already campaigning for November’s election.
“Donald Trump and Ron DeSantis are both scraping from the bottom of the barrel,” he said on CNN. He was responding to the US president’s tweet praising Gillum’s freshly minted Republican opponent and blasting the Democrat as “a failed Socialist Mayor… who has allowed crime & many other problems to flourish in his city”
It was a strong statement of unity that has served the progressive liberal well, not only in his run for the nomination, backed by George Soros and Bernie Sanders, but throughout his political career.
As a 23-year-old student at the historically black Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University (Famu), Gillum championed a people-first approach to politics and more funding for education during his successful campaign to be the youngest person ever elected to Tallahassee’s city commission. When in office he pushed forward a number…