Published: Mon, October 29, 2018
Worldwide | By Lisa Hogan

NY Times poll shows Andrew Gillum lead, narrow path for Ron DeSantis

NY Times poll shows Andrew Gillum lead, narrow path for Ron DeSantis

"Mr. DeSantis has got neo-Nazis helping him out in this state, he has spoken at racist conferences, he accepted a contribution - and would not return it - from someone who referred to the former president of the United States as a Muslim n-i-g-g-e-r". Some of the friends with whom Gillum and his wife vacationed on that trip were investors in a Tallahassee hotel that later received a $2 million grant through a unanimous vote by Gillum and city commissioners.

Tuesday's release of private emails and text messages by a former friend detailing the mayor's trips to Central America with lobbyists and to NY with federal investigators couldn't have come at a worse time for Gillum.

DeSantis, an Iraq war veteran, was much more interested in talking about crime and corruption.

In his Facebook Live video, Gillum called the newly-released text messages "distractions" from his campaign message and repeated that he had received the tickets from his brother.

Though the two clashed on health care, education, guns and the economy, the same attack themes came up repeatedly in the debate: Democratic Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum called Republican former U.S. Rep. DeSantis a liar who should be disqualified from being elected.

Gillum has denied that he or the city are targets of a criminal investigation. When he got the ticket he didn't know where his brother had gotten it. "There were high-ranking government officials caught on tape stuffing wads of bribe money in their pockets and saying things like, 'I've got larceny in my blood, ' and Federal Bureau of Investigation agents posing as representatives of a fictitious Middle Eastern sheik, gathering evidence of these big league crimes".

"I should have asked more questions to make sure that everything that transpired was above board", Gillum said, before quickly trying to switch topics.

DeSantis told the deputy "he knew there was a fight inside, but he did not observe anything".

"Thank you. At one point I started to feel bad for him". "It doesn't get more divisive than the Dream Defenders, and to this day, Andrew Gillum has not condemned the Dream Defenders".

In the brief moments when the candidates spoke about political issues, rather than each-other, it revealed stark differences in their platforms. DeSantis opposes new taxes. There is a 3.46 percent margin of error.

It's true DeSantis, 40, was interviewed by a deputy on a late night in 2000, when he was 21, following a bar fight in Clearwater. He said during the debate that he would have pushed for a "stronger bill" than one Gov. Rick Scott signed in the wake of the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Broward County.

DeSantis stuck to his guns. State prison. Are you going to hand them over to ICE or not?' he said.

The candidates also differ on voting rights for felons.

The Mysterious Ticket Andrew Gillum the Democratic candidate for Florida Governor, speaks during a campaign rally at the International Union of Painters and Allied Trades on August 31, 2018 in Orlando, Florida.

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