Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum got a boost Wednesday in his bid for governor, winning an endorsement from longtime Democratic Congressman Alcee Hastings.
With Hastings representing parts of Broward and Palm Beach counties, the endorsement could help Gillum in Democrat-rich South Florida. Also, it should be noted, Hastings endorsed Gillum over a former congressional colleague running for governor, Gwen Graham.
Here is Hastings’ statement, which was released by the Gillum campaign:
“We live in historically troubling times, and last year’s election result proved that the stakes are high. I feel it necessary to make my voice heard early in this process, so that Democrats and all Floridians understand what is at stake in the 2018 election. For the last 20 years, under Republican rule in Tallahassee, communities of color across the state have suffered from a lack of job opportunities, poor access to quality public education, and access to quality and affordable healthcare. As Democrats, we need to make significant changes, and in this spirit, I believe that Mayor Andrew Gillum is the right choice to lead our state.
“Mayor Gillum is an innovative pragmatic progressive leader that Florida desperately needs to confront our biggest challenges: attacking climate change, rebuilding our economy, protecting access to healthcare, and revitalizing public education. He has shown the courage to stand up for what he believes in, and he has never hesitated to give a voice to those who need one most. Floridians can trust Andrew Gillum to rebuild our state into one that works for everyone.
“There are outstanding Democrats that have announced or are mentioned as running for governor in our state. My support of Andrew should not be construed as being against others. I will vigorously support the Democratic nominee for governor and do all that I can to ensure that our state goes from Red to Blue in 2018.”