Andrew Gillum dominated the first Florida Governor's Debate, especially when asked about whether Donald Trump is a good role model for kids and during the closing statements. Tonight, Gillum took DeSantis to the wood chipper.
In the second debate Wednesday night, Gillum went for the jugular following direct questioning from the moderator about DeSantis' links to racist groups and his "monkey it up" statement. But the best part was when he said that he wasn't calling DeSantis a racist...but ended with 'I'm Simply Saying The Racists Believe He’s A Racist' (cue the eruptions of applause).
TODD: Mr.. DeSantis, to you. on the first day of the general election campaign you said of Andrew Gillum's run for Governor the last thing we need to do is "monkey this up by embracing a socialist agenda." FOX News disavowed the comments. you made appearances at four of David Horowitz's freedom center of events. Mr. Horowitz's statements " this country is almost -- it is not a McCarthy game - wait for the questions, sir- He said "if Blacks are oppressed in America, why isn't there a Black exodus?"
You said "He has done great work and I've been an admirer. I've been to these conferences and been a big admirer of an organization that tells the American people the truth in standing up for the right thing."
DESANTIS: He had not made those statements then. How am I supposed to know every single statement somebody makes? (shrieking) Here's the deal. Let me say this straight up. I've lived my life whether it's athletics, military, serving as a prosecutor -- when I was downrange in Iraq we worked together as a team regardless of race. We had the American flag on our arm and wore the same uniform and fought for the country. When I was a prosecutor I stood up for victims at special of every race, color in creed. It's something I believe in and as governor I will represent all the people. I'm not going to bow down to the altar of political correctness. I'm not going to let the media smear me. Andrew Gillum has endorsed the Israel is an apartheid state.
TODD: I'm going to call time right there. Mr. DeSantis, I will point out I wish you would have waited for the question because I had a question and it's not what you think it is.
GILLUM: Let me first say my dog will holler and it hollered through this room. Mr. DeSantis has spoken. He has Neo-Nazis helping him out in the state. He has spoken at racist conferences, accepted a contribution and would not return it from someone who referred to the former President of the United States as "a Muslim N-I-G-G-E-R" -- he said he's using that money to -- I'm not calling Mr. DeSantis a racist, i'm just saying the racists believe he's a racist.
TODD: I would ask the audience to please let Mr. DeSantis respond.
DESANTIS: The conference I attended was keynoted by a medal of honor recipient. It was not a racial conference. That is an absolute lie. I'm not going to sit here and take this nonsense from a guy like Andrew Gillum who always plays the victim. Who's going out and attacking -- aligning himself with groups who attack law enforcement, our military. He will not disavow the dream defenders. None of these things people are saying that the dream defenders and they endorsed him and that is wrong. -- they endorsed -- he endorsed the dream defenders and they endorsed him and that is wrong.
GILLUM: Attempts to manipulate my record to mean I am against law and order. Under my leadership, we hired 50 new law enforcement officers in the City of Tallahassee. In my city we are experiencing a five-year low in our crime rate. He described a city run amok in the last debate and Politico had to collect him -- the little fact -- Polifact had to correct him. We will retire him on November 6 and keep it moving.
The Hill has an entire recap of the debate, but this moment was the highlight.