I read Leslie Wimes' column Friday about Andrew Gillum, and I'm not one bit surprised she thinks Gillum walks on water, same as she thinks Obama did.
Unfortunately for her, Gillum ain’t Obama, and she readily acknowledges that, too.
Florida isn’t going to elect a left-wing Democrat to the governorship, period.
As a lifelong Democrat, albeit a conservative one, there isn’t a chance in hell that Gillum will see the inside of the Governor’s Mansion, except perhaps, as an invited guest of the real governor.
Because he already has five strikes against him, and we haven’t even gotten to 2018 yet.
Yep, FIVE strikes.
Strike one: He illegally used city staff, city computers, and then sent overt political emails to Tallahassee voters under the aegis of communicating with his constituents.
When he got caught, he paid back the cost of the email list, which he insisted city taxpayers pay one-half of, while his campaign paid the other half.
Any idiot knows that is illegal. If they’re too stupid to understand that fact, the city’s CFO should have certainly flagged it right away, because any bookkeeper – and citizen – knows that’s wrong.
But paying back the cost of the emails doesn’t absolve Gillum of anything.
He didn’t pay back for the staff time used illegally.
He didn’t pay back the use of city computers that were used illegally.
You can’t commit an illegal act, get caught, pay some money back and then think you can walk away from it.
Except poor, dumb Gillum.
Strike two: The high crime rate in Tallahassee.
It didn’t just happen, we’ve been at the top for the last three years. And he’s been on the City Commission for 15 years, since he graduated from college.
If he’s the chosen one, why hasn’t he done something about crime? I’ll tell you why: because he’s too busy consorting with the likes of George Soros and Norman Lear to busy himself with the nuts and bolts of his own community’s crime problem.
Oh, he’s put it on the agenda for the next City Commission meeting, and he’ll point fingers at everyone except himself, because it’s easy for him to do.
You see, Leslie, he’s a smooth talker, and he gets to control the agenda at City Commission meetings.
Strike three: He was just accused of using Charlie Crist’s fundraising list to mine for his own campaign.
How sweet of him to use something that belongs to someone else for his own financial benefit.
If it was a federal campaign list, it could be a violation of federal law.
Strike four: Gillum’s never met a tax increase he didn’t like.
He won’t even consider cutting expenses before raising taxes.
Even when the city had a budget surplus of over $14 million in 2015, he still insisted on raising taxes in 2016.
Strike five: He and others in the Tallahassee power structure have just been served with FBI subpoenas.
Gillum claims he’s not a focus of the investigation.
Guess what? That doesn’t matter. The feds will go wherever the facts lead them.
His former campaign treasurer was the beneficiary of a CRA sweetheart deal on the Edison Restaurant.
There’s been smoke billowing from that place for the last couple of years.
And Leslie, where there’s smoke, there’s fire.
Adam Corey or Ryan Grindler will, in this federal investigative process, get “turned.” And when that happens, everyone is going down.
There is corruption here in Tallahassee and everyone suspects it, and the feds have decided to go and check it out for themselves.
They’ll find the truth and in the meantime, the dark clouds that have been gathering here in the state capital aren’t going to go away anytime soon.
So, yeah, Leslie, you go right on talking about your guy Gillum.
Floridians haven’t elected a Democrat in a generation, and for good reason. And from the looks of it right now, with your own recent commentary to buttress my argument about the leadership disintegration of the Florida Democratic Party, the chances of a leftie winning is about the same chance that tomorrow it’s going to snow somewhere in Florida.
And just to help you out, Gillum is one helluva speaker. I admit it.
He wants free health care for all.
A free college education for everyone.
A “living” wage for all workers.
Who wouldn’t want to vote for someone like that?
The only problem is, Floridians know better than to believe a Huey Long-like populist candidate promising a “chicken in every pot.”
You know why? Because Floridians, and now Americans intuitively understand that nothing is free.
There is one thing, though, that we can both agree on.
Gillum has never worked a day off the government payroll. He’s never created a job. He’s never paid unemployment compensation taxes. He’s never made a profit. He simply is a government tool.
Gillum is now part of the walking dead.
He’s on life support. He’ll continue to collect money because to do otherwise is to ensure that he would have to go out and get a real job.
Now he won’t even be a possible lieutenant governor nominee. Go figure.
Barney Bishop III is a former executive director of the Florida Democratic Party. A self-described conservative Democrat, he believes that a strong private enterprise system is the hallmark of a democracy. You can contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org