Who Is Andrew Gillum?
A closer look at the politics of the Democratic candidate for Florida governor.
A few days ago, 39-year-old Andrew Gillum – the Tallahassee, Florida mayor who proudly embraces the socialist political and economic agenda of Bernie Sanders – won his party’s gubernatorial primary race in that state. This sets the stage for November, when Gillum will face Republican Ron DeSantis in the election for governor. Gillum’s campaign has been endorsed not only by Sanders, but also by Our Revolution, an activist organization that explicitly promotes the Vermont senator’s agenda.
Gillum has a long history of political activism that stretches back to his school days. When he was enrolled at Florida A&M University, for instance, he was very active in the Student Government Association. In early 2000, Gillum helped organize a large “March on Tallahassee” to protest Governor Jeb Bush’s 1999 executive order abolishing affirmative action in state university admissions and state contracting. To reward Gillum’s activism vis-a-vis this and other matters, the Center for Policy Alternatives recognized him as the nation’s top student leader in 2001.
In 2002, Gillum became the Florida Field Organizer with the People For the American Way Foundation (PFAWF), spearheading its “Arrive With 5” initiative – a pro-Democrat voter-mobilization campaign whereby young people pledged to bring five additional voters with them to the polls on Election Day.
In 2003, the Florida Democratic Party recruited Gillum to serve as its interim Political Director, but before long he returned to his previous position with PFAWF. Also in 2003, Gillum was elected to the Tallahassee City Council, a post he would hold for the next 11 years.
In late 2004, Gillum, in addition to his City Council duties, became the National Deputy Director of PFAWF’s “Young People For” program, a campus-based initiative designed to develop young leftist leaders across the United States. In 2006 he established the Young Elected Officials Network, which had a similar mission. The leading funder of this organization was George Soros’s Open Society Institute. Soros, of course, is the multi-billionaire who has long bankrolled a myriad of far-left causes.
In 2014, Gillum was elected Mayor of Tallahassee. Two years later, he was given a platform from which to speak at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia.
- strongly favors the expansion of Obamacare as a step toward a government-run, single-payer, “Medicare-for-all” healthcare system;
- strongly favors government-enforced affirmative action policies designed to compensate nonwhites and women for the effects of past and present discrimination;
- strongly favors a steeply progressive income-tax structure where high earners pay disproportionately high rates, and where corporate taxes are increased significantly;
- strongly favors the implementation of a pathway-to-citizenship for illegal aliens;
- strongly favors the enactment of carbon taxes, higher CAFE standards for automobiles, and federal funding for the research-and-development of wind and solar power technology;
- strongly opposes Voter ID laws as racist schemes that are designed to suppress minority voting;
- believes that the enactment of voucher programs through which low-income parents can take their children out of substandard public schools and send them instead to superior private schools, constitutes bad public policy;
- believes that the availability of guns should be severely restricted, even for law-abiding citizens who have never been convicted of a crime, and that the 2nd Amendment does not guarantee Americans the right to possess a firearm;
- supports a complete ban on so-called “assault weapons”;
- believes that the federal government should inject large amounts of funding – in the form of cash as well as federal job-creation programs – to help the U.S. economy recover from downturns that it may experience;
- believes that the nationalization of banks and corporations is more appropriate than government bailouts of those entities when they fail economically;
- calls for a national $15-per-hour minimum wage requirement for all workers; and
- advocates the repeal of Florida’s “stand-your-ground” gun laws which permit people to use deadly force if they feel that their lives are threatened by an aggressor or assailant.
Gillum also has released a video demanding that President Trump be impeached because he allegedly “obstructed justice” by firing former FBI Director James Comey.
The two leading individual donors to Gillum’s 2018 campaign have been George Soros and another left-wing billionaire, Tom Steyer. Scarcely two weeks ago, Soros, who already had contributed $1 million to Gillum’s Forward Florida political committee, announced that he was giving $250,000 more. And Steyer, who had previously funneled $500,000 to Forward Florida, pledged another $300,000. “I’m obviously deeply appreciative of Mr. Soros, as well as Mr. Steyer, both men who I’ve known them for some time,” said Gillum. The most recent Soros/Steyer donations coincided with a $3.5 million get-out-the-vote effort by a coalition of pro-Gillum leftist organizations.