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MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Democrats vying for their party’s nomination for Governor are spending the primary election day drumming up last minute support.
Former Congresswoman Gwen Graham has 32-percent support among likely Democratic primary voters, followed by Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum at 25-percent and former Miami Beach Mayor Philip Levine at 22-percent. Jeff Greene is barely clinging to double digits at 11-percent and Chris King has 2-percent, according to a St. Pete Polls survey.
Tuesday, Graham served cafe con leche to early morning voters at Versailles in Little Havana and asked for their support.
“This election is one the most in important in Florida’s history because of all the issues. We need to have a governor that needs to do what’s right for the people of Florida in supporting public education, protecting our environment, making sure that we have health care that’s affordable and accessible, making sure that we have an economy that works for all Floridians, bringing jobs to Florida that are great paying jobs. This is why I am running because all these issues are quality of life issues and when I am governor I am going to wake up every day, working and fighting for the people of Florida,” said Graham.
“My commitment to the people of Florida is that when I’m Governor it’s going to be your lives who improve, not the lives of the special interests and lobbyists who have had control over Tallahassee for the last 20 years,” she added.
Nova Southeastern Univeristy Political Scientist Charles Zelden said one advantage Graham has is her last name.
“Graham’s strength is name recognition. This is a big state. Most of the candidates running are either not politicians or they’re from South Florida or Tallahassee, they have regional recognition, but outside of that region who knows them,” he said.
And Graham is not afraid to use that name recognition.
“Public service is in my blood. My father Bob Graham was the example, is the example, of serving the people and I think we have gotten away from this. This is not about serving a political party or serving, in the case of Ron Disantis, Donald Trump, it’s about serving the people of Florida and Florida herself,” she said, “By the way, I think Florida is female.”
Graham, the daughter of former Senator Bob Graham, plans to wrap her day in downtown Orlando at a watch party at The Social.
Gillum, who has branded himself the only non-millionaire candidate, brought his “Bring It Home” bus tour to Gainesville and Tallahassee.
“My name is a proxy for those of us who want affordable health care in this state,” he told a fired up crowd of supporters. “And let health care be treated as a right and not a privilege in the State of Florida.
Gillum’s watch party will be at the Hotel Duvalle in Tallahassee.
Levine’s campaign believes if he can win South Florida, he can win the state. Early Tuesday morning he and his family voted at a polling station on Miami Beach. Throughout the day, he plans to make a final statewide push to get out the vote, with visits to St. Petersburg, Tampa, West Palm Beach, Coconut Creek, and Miami polling locations.
He plans to end his day with an election night watch party at his campaign headquarters in Miami.
Greene, who denied rumors that he was throwing in the towel, cast his vote Tuesday in Palm Beach. His campaign has canceled their election night watch party, Greene plans to watch the results from home.
King and his family also cast their votes on election day and encouraged his supporters to do the same if they haven’t voted already.