For years the image of who drives change in our democracy has reflected an old narrative of straight white men in smoky rooms. 

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Andrew Gillum Still Wants to be Governor of Florida

Andrew Gillum Still Wants to be Governor of Florida

During a DNC fireside chat with The Beat DC’s Tiffany D. Cross in Atlanta last week, Florida Democrat Andrew Gillum said he still plans to be governor of the Sunshine State.  Cross asked if he saw a role for himself in a Democratic administration post-2020. “I ran for governor and I still plan to be governor,” the 39-year-old rising star replied. “I don’t think I’ve said this anywhere else.” Gillum ran through several campaign tactics and strategies he would do differently next time including his field game and deep diving in traditionally red counties. His 2018 campaign, where he narrowly lost to DeSantic, is currently the focus of a federal investigation. A federal grand jury in north Florida has subpoenaed information related to the campaign, his political committee and associated non-profit groups. Sharon Lettman-Hicks, a top strategist named in a federal subpoena, is currently on salary at the Florida Democratic Party. Regular Beat readers will recall that Gillum in March announced an ambitious plan to register up to 1 million voters as part of an effort to block Donald Trump from retaking Florida, the nation's largest battleground state. Lettman-Hicks is helping to coordinate that effort between the party and Gillum’s Forward Florida political organization. The group has raised $800,000, including $250,000 collected after news of the subpoena broke. There are obvious parallels between the investigation of Gillum’s campaign and that of Georgia Democrat, who also narrowly lost her race for Governor last year. The new director of Georgia's ethics commission, who donated to Abrams’ Republican opponent, says he plans to subpoena bank and financial records from the campaign and groups associated with her campaign, including PACs and special interest groups. Gillum hinted at his belief in political motivations behind the investigations but otherwise expressed his readiness to “assist any future review of our work” and his confidence that his campaign did everything above board. We’ll keep you posted on any future announcement of a Gillum gubernatorial campaign.

Mark Takano and Juan Vargas Push ICE on Deported Veterans

Mark Takano and Juan Vargas Push ICE on Deported Veterans

Luke Campbell Ponders Mayoral Run

Luke Campbell Ponders Mayoral Run