Nikki Fried discusses women in politics, DeSantis-Trump relationship in North Florida Democratic Club talk
Nikki Fried.

'Running in politics and being involved in politics is hard. Being a female in politics is even harder.'

Agriculture Commissioner and gubernatorial candidate Nikki Fried spoke during a meeting of the Democratic Club of North Florida Monday evening in a conversation framed around Women’s History Month.

Fried gave a prepared statement touching on her experience as a woman in politics. She then fielded questions from club members ranging from her work on environmental issues to her thoughts on the relationship between Gov. Ron DeSantis and Donald Trump.

Her campaign has had an eventful past month that involved leadership turnover and the hacking of her campaign Twitter account Saturday. Polling at the end of February has her just trailing U.S. Rep. Charlie Crist in the Democratic Primary but behind DeSantis by a large margin.

During Monday’s meeting, she told the panel that she was the first female Agricultural Commissioner and University of Florida Student Body President in 20 years. She said she knows Florida is ready for its first female Governor.

“Running in politics and being involved in politics is hard. Being a female in politics is even harder,” Fried said. “No offense to you men, but it’s time for us women to lead. We do it with grace. We don’t care about our egos. We want to lift everybody up. We want everybody to have a seat at the table.”

She also discussed some of her accomplishments as commissioner, like helping create Florida’s hemp industry. The new industry has had a $380 million economic impact and created 11,000 jobs since the state hemp program was launched in 2019. Fried reflected on meeting the female owner of a hemp store in Broward County while on the campaign trail.

“I opened up the doors for somebody like her to not only have a job, but the owner of the store, be an entrepreneur, and be a small business owner,” Fried said.

She also took shots at DeSantis during her remarks, but said attacking him alone is not enough to beat him.

“We can’t beat him just by talking about how bad he is. We all know that. We all know what he’s been doing to our state,” Fried said. “We need a qualified, accomplished, proven fighter to do this, and to make sure that we’re talking about what we are going to do.”

When asked whether DeSantis is just following the Trump train, Fried said has heard that the two butt heads behind closed doors because DeSantis hasn’t “kissed the ring”, which she said has the potential to harm him in the future if he runs for President.

“Trump, regardless of whether he runs or not, is going to want to anoint the next President. And so he is not going to want it to be DeSantis because he knows DeSantis doesn’t feel like he needs it,”  she said.

She also said she wants to reach out to start building dialogue with Trump supporters in the state because if she ignored Floridians, she would be “no better than DeSantis.”

“My goal is to not empower Trump, but to let those Trump supporters start to lay down their weapons, and start actually having conversations about things, and not so much of the aggression and the anger that we’re seeing in our state.”

However, she said she would not make life easy for Republican lawmakers if they are unwilling to work with her if elected, threatening to use the veto pen to keep them in Tallahassee for longer than 60 days.

“They’re going to be missing their family, they’re gonna be missing their jobs. And at the end of the day, they’re gonna realize that the things that they’re fighting against are stupid,” Fried said.

Tristan Wood

Tristan Wood graduated from the University of Florida in 2021 with a degree in Journalism. A South Florida native, he has a passion for political and accountability reporting. He previously reported for Fresh Take Florida, a news service that covers the Florida Legislature and state political stories operating out of UF’s College of Journalism and Communications. You can reach Tristan at [email protected], or on Twitter @TristanDWood


  • Impeach Biden

    March 22, 2022 at 7:49 am

    Fraud has been running for Governor since she began her term as Ag Commissioner. First thing she did was post a picture of herself on every gas pump in the state of Florida for recognition. Then she went on personal attacks against DeSantis and often enlisted fellow wackos, Rebekah Jones (Fake Scientist), to push her smear campaign against our wildly popular Governor. It didn’t work Nikki. Time for some reflection and a slice of humble pie. Many of us will not miss you come November.

  • Ron Ogden is a RINO

    March 22, 2022 at 10:37 am

    What a total loser. Being a woman makes it harder. Seriously shut up with your victim status. No one cares.


    It’s hard. I have a vagina. Cry harder. Loser.

    • I don’t

      March 23, 2022 at 10:56 am

      “Shut up with your victim status no one cares”

      You ever wonder why she left?

      Man people like are why suffer age happened lol

  • L Middleton

    March 22, 2022 at 12:00 pm

    ““No offense to you men, but it’s time for us women to lead. We do it with grace. We don’t care about our egos. We want to lift everybody up. We want everybody to have a seat at the table.”

    Like men are graceless? Have huge egos (and women do not! LOL)? Want to keep people down? Are exclusionary?

    How would you like it if a man talked this way about women. “No offense ladies, but it’s time for us men to lead…..”

    • Oh no

      March 23, 2022 at 2:08 pm

      “Like men are graceless”

      Ouch right in that male pride lol

  • Fred Up

    March 24, 2022 at 11:48 pm

    Women in politics? Thats confusing these days. Can Nikki tell us what a woman is? If so, perhaps she can also explain it to the train wreck of a SCOTUS nominee going through senate hearings. Why anyone would vote for these lunatic democrats is beyond me………

  • Antonio

    March 25, 2022 at 12:32 am

    And she still does not talk about her platform. “It’s time for women to lead” is not a reason to vote for someone.

Comments are closed.


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