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‘Rise above partisanship’: Andrew Gillum extols ‘cooperation’ with Rick Scott, White House

On MSNBC Thursday afternoon, Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum extolled cooperation with Gov. Rick Scott and President Donald Trump in the wake of Hurricane Michael.

Gillum, the Democratic gubernatorial nominee, had been called a socialist and worse by Scott and Trump on the campaign trail. However, as recovery continues from the Category 4 storm, Gillum was able to praise his political opponents for cooperation.

“My office has been in touch with the White House. We’ve been in more increased touch with Gov. Scott’s office; in fact, I just got off the phone with him a few minutes ago touching bases on what’s been done,” Gillum said.

Interviewer Andrea Mitchell attempted to get Gillum to weigh in on the voter registration deadline, which elapsed Wednesday after a one-day extension despite a lawsuit from Florida Democrats and condemnations of the move from Gillum and many others.

However, the candidate quickly pivoted back to storm relief.

“During this difficult time, we’re really most interested in making our communities whole again … getting our communities up and restored and doing everything we can to work together,” Gillum asserted.

“The community is looking to us to rise above partnership,” Gillum added. “We’re certainly trying to do that. I think in the case of the Governor and Sen. (BillNelson. I hope the political cooperation will continue as we get our communities back up to 100 percent.”

The storm’s major impact in Tallahassee was to the electrical system. Fallen trees and branches led to 110,000 outages at this writing. Assessment, said Gillum, is ongoing.

Written By

A.G. Gancarski has been a working journalist for over two decades, with bylines in national and local publications alike on subjects ranging from pop music to national and global politics. Gancarski has been a correspondent for since 2014, and has held a column in Jacksonville, Florida's Folio Weekly for two decades. In 2018, he was a finalist for an Association of Alternative Newsweeklies "best political column." Gancarski is a frequent presence on Jacksonville television and radio, including fill-in slots on WJCT-FM's award-winning talk show "First Coast Connect." He can be reached at

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