Ad Watch: Gillum goes ‘Too Far’

The Republican Governors Association is releasing its first TV commercial in support of Ron DeSantis’ campaign for Governor. This commercial, however, never mentions DeSantis – instead it focuses on Democrat Andrew Gillum. The commercials uses a space theme to criticize Gillum’s policy positions, saying he goes too far.

Saying Gillum is too radical for Florida, the RGA is critical of three specific policies he’s pushing – universal health care, a one billion dollar increase on corporate taxes and abolishment of ICE – the federal immigration enforcement agency. A Florida governor would have no power to abolish ICE or expand universal health care. Both are under the federal government. Gillum could push for a tax increase, though his plan would be dead on arrival in a Republican-led legislature.

“Andrew Gillum’s radical far-left policies are too extreme for Florida’s working families,” said RGA spokesman Jon Thompson. “Gillum supports a complete government takeover of healthcare, a billion dollar tax hike, and wants to close down our immigration enforcement agency. Andrew Gillum is too radical for Florida.”

The Tallahassee Mayor started his general election campaign for governor with a clean slate because of his come-from-behind win in the Democratic primary. He was never attacked by his Democrat opponents for his policy positions or ethical issues. Gillum leads a city government that is the focus of an ongoing FBI corruption investigation. His personal relationship with lobbyist Adam Corey, who is the center of the FBI probe, is also the subject of an investigation by the Florida Ethics Commission. Gillum took two trips with Corey – to Costa Rica and New York City – that may have been, at least partially, paid for by the lobbyist. If so, that would be a violation of state ethics laws. Gillum produced receipts last week from both trips, but that disclosure led to more questions than it answered.

The race between DeSantis and Gillum is tight in initial polls. A Gravis Marketing survey conducted at the end of August showed Gillum with a two-point lead, within the margin of effort. Other polls have showed similar results.

The RGA plans to spend $10 million in support of DeSantis. The “Too Far” commercial is the RGA’s first ad. The Democratic Governors Association has, so far, announced its spending $2 million to back Gillum. Other outside groups will also likely get involved in the race. That’s on top of the campaign commercials both campaigns will air themselves.