‘Dirty Daniel Davis’ ad stokes controversy in Jax mayoral race

The new ad attacks Davis for legislative votes, questionable supporters.

The ongoing brawl in the Jacksonville mayoral race continues with another attack ad from a political committee.

JAX First, which supports Republican LeAnna Gutierrez Cumber, is out with a new 30-second spot dissing “Dirty Daniel Davis,” another Republican candidate who currently chairs the Jacksonville Chamber of Commerce, as “sleazy and dangerous.”

The Cumber/Davis battle has dominated local media coverage in recent weeks as the March election nears, and the new attack on Davis makes a number of claims his campaign contests as “gutter politics.”

The ad claims Davis voted for legislation in the Florida House that would “make it easier for criminals to cover up sexual assaults against children.”

A press release accompanying the spot cites a Davis floor vote in 2013 on an amendment favorable to the Florida Association of Christian Child Caring Agencies that exempted the agency, which investigates Christian child care agencies, from reporting requirements. The amendment did not make it into the final bill.

The spot also attacks Davis for the Jacksonville Chamber of Commerce funding of JASMYN, an agency that supports LGBTQ teens, which came under fire last year for providing programming materials deemed inappropriate for young children. The political committee cites reporting from the conservative Florida Standard and Florida Voice in support of its claim.

The spot also condemns Davis for accepting support, including a $1,000 campaign contribution, from former NFL wide receiver Laveranues Coles, a former NFL wide receiver who has moved into the entertainment business more recently. He had previously explored opening an adult showbar.

Florida Politics reported back in 2021 that Davis was to speak at the “Urban Movement Day Party” at the XO Lounge, another Coles enterprise.

The ad is making an impact on the narrative of the mayoral race going into the weekend.

Davis was joined by Sheriff TK Waters and Fraternal Order of Police President Randy Reeves at a press conference at the FOP headquarters Friday morning, and the Davis camp has offered a press release summarizing its strenuous objections to the latest attack ad, while countering that Davis had a history in local and state politics as pushing for tough laws against sex offenders.

“My opponent’s latest attack ad trivializes serious issues and politicizes the pain of others for nothing more than political gain,” Davis said. “When dirty politicians are down, they resort to these gross tactics, and I believe Jacksonville deserves better.”

“Daniel Davis has led on public safety and protecting children. He is the law and order candidate and the public safety candidate, and he is who I trust because … his record of cracking down on criminal activity and supporting law enforcement is crystal clear for over two decades,” Waters said. “These are serious issues that we are combating every day and the idea that anyone would use these issues, in a baseless attack as a cheap stunt, has no place in a serious conversation about public safety.”

“In 2014 we drew a line in the sand to protect Florida’s children with some of the toughest restrictions and punishments against the monsters who prey on our children. I was proud to stand with Senate Sponsor Rob Bradley, then-Rep. Daniel Davis and the entire legislature to unanimously pass bipartisan reform to protect our children,” said Agriculture Commissioner Wilton Simpson, a former state Senator who served as Senate President.

“Campaigns are tough, but these kinds of baseless attacks that trivialize such important policy matters are an attack on everyone who worked to transform our laws. Ms. Cumber should be ashamed of herself for weaponizing public safety and the pain of others for political gain. If LeAnna Cumber cares at all about her city, she’ll take the ad down immediately.”

“LeAnna Cumber’s baseless attacks and senseless abuse of her platform reaffirms the Fraternal Order of Police decision not to support her. She is exploiting victims of horrific crimes in pursuit of power and the City of Jacksonville deserves better,” Reaves said. “Make no mistake, Daniel Davis is the law enforcement candidate in this race. Voters should not be fooled by the baseless political attacks being launched from a desperate politician.”


A.G. Gancarski

A.G. Gancarski has written for FloridaPolitics.com since 2014. He is based in Northeast Florida. He can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter: @AGGancarski


  • Yulee

    February 3, 2023 at 11:31 am

    WaWaWa, Davis is complaining, while he smears a good man in Al Ferraro with is latest Tv ad. Davis is sleazy just like the Ad says. He will not get the support of Real Southerners, because. he wants to take down historic Confederate Monuments. Karma is upon you Davis.

    • Liz

      February 3, 2023 at 1:05 pm

      All three of them are sleazy and have no business being in public office. Didn’t we learn anything from the many ethically devoid crises over the last eight years, especially JEA?? Kids Hope Alliance? Lot J? Ad infinitum. Ad nauseam.

      • Sweaty Establishment

        February 3, 2023 at 7:13 pm

        CURRY = DAVIS = establishment. Vote NO on any establishment candidate.

      • Jill

        February 3, 2023 at 9:30 pm

        All 3? Ferraro voted no to Lot J, no to sales tax, no to JEA. He was one of a few. I guarantee he would not be speaking at a Strip Club like Davis or the questionable voting like McCumber. The people he has served in the district admire and trust him.
        I haven’t seen the ad but heard about it. I saw the vote plus it’s in the county records, he voted no on JEA.

        • Jill

          February 3, 2023 at 9:32 pm

          Let me add….Ferraro smears no one! I would be shocked to see if negative flyers endorsed by him, not of his character.

  • CM Smith

    February 3, 2023 at 1:16 pm

    Party in his honor at …a strip club? We all held our nose and voted for Trump but I’m DONE with these kind of individuals.

  • Haywood Jablowme

    February 3, 2023 at 4:11 pm


  • Dilly Pantinakis

    February 3, 2023 at 6:36 pm

    Sleezy describes them perfectly. I feel bad for ol TK, he doesn’t realized they are going to drag our sheriff up there and endorse every Baker client and support every Baker mission until he resides in Nassau County and gives up.

  • Susan

    February 3, 2023 at 10:20 pm

    Easy A.G.! Folks might think you are working for the Davis campaign.

Comments are closed.


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