Adam Putnam will detail his vision for Florida’s future, laying out a plan to make Florida a “launch pad for the American Dream” when he formally announces his 2018 gubernatorial bid today.
Putnam, the state’s agriculture commissioner, will launch his gubernatorial bid on the steps of the Old Polk County Courthouse in Bartow at 11 a.m. today. Afterward, he’s scheduled to attend a Florida Grown Hometown BBQ hosted by his political committee, Florida Grown, in downtown Bartow.
According to prepared remarks provided ahead of his speech, Putnam is expected to put a focus on how the Sunshine State “isn’t only the place where people come after a life well-lived somewhere else; it’s where they come to launch their own American Dream.”
“Our state can be the launch pad for the American Dream. The state that is the fishing capital of the world can also be the state that builds the boats and trains the craftsmen,” he is expected to say. “The state that trained millions of soldiers and sailors and airmen can retrain our citizens with the skills that allow them to compete in a rapidly changing world – and win. The state that put a man on the moon can build the tools for the next giant leap for mankind.”
Putnam will point to examples of “American exceptionalism” in Florida, according to his speech.
“Look at the grocery clerk in Lakeland who revolutionized the supermarket industry,” he is expected to say. “Or the cashier on I-Drive who now owns the souvenir shop… It’s the truck driver hauling fruit who saved up to buy an orange grove, and then another… It’s the hotel maid who now runs her own bed and breakfast.”
“Hard-working folks like these have been able to achieve their American Dream right here in Florida. I want every single Floridian to be able to tell a similar story. I want people around the country to know this is where it happens,” he is expected to continue. “It’s why we have more work to do. It’s why we’ve got to keep fighting to put Florida first and make our state the launch pad for the American Dream.”
Putnam will be joined on the stage today by retired Army Sgt. Jordan Corbett, who served in the 555th Parachute Infantry, and Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd. Corbett will deliver the Pledge of Allegiance, while Judd is expected to introduce Putnam. The Bartow High School Marching Band will be on hand to play the National Anthem.