Who Is The History-Making Andrew Gillum? Everything You Need To Know About Florida’s First Black Nominee For Governor

by Jessica Lane

August 29, 2018

Photo via Twitter

Andrew Gillum, the 39-year-old Tallahassee Mayor, made history yesterday when he became Florida’s first Black nominee for governor.

His slow and steady approach toppled the Florida political machine beating out the expected winner, former Rep. Gwen Graham, with the grassroots support of the Florida people and organizations like Indivisible (basically created to keep Trump and his brand of conservatism – read racism – out of politics). The only non-millionaire of the race, his opponents campaigns spent $90 million vs. his $6 million. The voting power of the people swung in his favor.

Gillum seemed to spring out of nowhere with literally every black outlet (and a lot of progressive ones too) jumping for joy over his Florida primary win. But exactly, who is Andrew Gillum and why should we all care?

Who Is Andrew Gillum?

This FAMU alum (shoutout to the Rattlers) was elected the Mayor of Tallahassee in 2014. His most notable achievement? He defeated the National Rifle Association (NRA) last year, keeping a city ordinance in place that outlawed fire arms in public parks.  Speaking of gun reform, he also pressed current Republican Gov. Rick Scott to suspend the infamous “Stand Your Ground” law (which became the defense strategy in the Trayvon Martin case).

This handsome, and very married gentleman (sorry ladies!), comes from a working-class family of seven siblings and was born and raised in Florida. And, this isn’t the first time he’s made political history, previously, he was the youngest persom elected to the Tallahassee city commission.

Why Should We All Care?

If isn’t crystal clear by now, Gillum could become the first Black governor of Florida and the next democratic governor (cause Florida hasn’t had one since the ’90s). He, and another emerging star Stacey Abrams, could shock these long-standing conservative states and actually get elected. We talk about Trump, the Republican regime and the very real need for our communities to have laws and policies that support us. This Bernie Sanders-endorsed candidate could achieve this for Florida and then, who knows what’s next.

And these final words from former Florida state Sen. Dwight Bullard sum it up nicely:

“Black voters, other voters of color, and progressives can claim this victory as theirs,” Gillum said in a statement. “Together, we made history. Gillum’s victory shows that we can no longer be ignored or taken for granted. We’re stepping into the process and we’re demanding more.”

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