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Follow the money

Gillum takes in 4x more than DeSantis


  • Sarasota
  • Opinion
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Donald Trump proved money doesn’t buy an election. His Democratic opponent raised more and spent more than he did in 2016 — roughly $1.4 billion for Hillary Clinton versus Trump’s $957 million.

Even so, it’s illuminating when you follow the money.

In that vein, you can see how Florida Democratic Party gubernatorial nominee Andrew Gillum ignited party contributors after his upset victory in the August primary election. He has been the beneficiary of a cash avalanche since then compared to his Republican opponent Ron DeSantis, taking in four times more than DeSantis.

You’ve heard all the talk about Democrats being energized; this certainly is proof.

That point is even more evident when you consider: Since the primary, the Republican Party of Florida has contributed $70,000 to DeSantis, while the Democratic Party of Florida has contributed $30,357 to Gillum. Subtract those amounts from the contributions, and it says more contributors are behind Gillum at this point than they are behind DeSantis. 

Look also at the disparity between the number of people who have contributed $1,000 or more. Gillum has attracted almost twice as many. 

This is also telling: Gillum is drawing contributions from far more out-of-state contributors than is DeSantis. No surprise there. The Democratic Party is going all-out to win Florida’s gubernatorial race.

That point is certainly evident when you look at the consultants Gillum has behind him. He issued a news release this week listing 19 consultants, strategists and media people whose experience is deep in Democratic Party campaigns nationally and in Florida. A sampling… 

  • Brandon Davis, campaign manager: 2016 chief of staff at the Democratic National Committee.
  • Scott Arceneaux, senior strategic adviser: 2009-2017, executive director of the Florida Democratic Party.
  • Sharon Lettman-Hicks, senior strategic adviser: CEO, National Black Justice Coalition, senior leader previously at People For the American Way Foundation.
  • Zach Learner, deputy manager of the campaign: director of voter protection for Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign in Florida. He served on both Obama presidential campaigns.
  • Jon Adrabi, senior consultant: served as deputy national finance director for Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign.