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MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Coming off a raucous rally Thursday night near Ft. Myers with President Donald Trump and Governor Rick Scott, Republican gubernatorial nominee Ron DeSantis is in Miami.

Thursday morning he was joined by Senator Marco Rubio at a “community outreach event” with local faith leaders at the Alpha & Omega Church Iglesia Cristiana De Miami on Miller Drive.

“I am happy to say of the candidates running I am the only candidate that has served our country in uniform, in Iraq, and in the Armed Forces. I am proud to say I am the only candidate that’s committed not to raise taxes in Florida so we can keep our economy going. And I happen to be the only candidate that can ‘I ain’t under investigation for corruption by the FBI’,” DeSantis told the crowd.

Desantis opponent, Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum has repeatedly said the FBI has told him he is not a focus of the probe. There has been no suggestion of outright ‘thievery’, as suggested by Trump, even by Gillum’s political opponents. The probe centers on whether developers successfully influenced city projects.

“We have the power to create government under the Constitution and the purpose of the government is not to dictate our life, not to run our lives, but to protect the rights we already possess by the grace of God and create an open field and fair chance for what (Abraham) Lincoln said was everyone’s intelligence enterprise and industry to flourish,” said DeSantis.

DeSantis said if elected he would continue to work with the Trump administration.

“I am proud to be the only candidate in the race with a record that is unimpeachable with respect to standing with our allies, the state of Israel. When President Trump was elected I knew that was our opportunity to finally have a president that would make good on the long promise of two decades that we would recognize Jerusalem as the eternal, and indivisible, capital of the Jewish people and move our embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem and by golly I worked hard and President Trump made the decision,” he said. “My opponent doesn’t even think the embassy should be there, doesn’t think that Israel is the eternal and indivisible capital of the Jewish people, I don’t know where he wants us to put the embassy. Give me a break, this a no-brainer.”

DeSantis also pitched his pro-life view which seemed to go over well with the church supports.

“I believe in the sanctity of life. I will create a culture of life in the state of Florida. My opponent supports things like taxpayer funding for late-term abortions in which the child can feel pain, excruciating pain,” he said as several in the crowd moaned. “He doesn’t even support life-saving treatments for babies that survive abortions attempts. That is extreme, that is wrong.”

DeSantis said he supported the state’s private school voucher program because it helped empower low-income parents to get their children into better schools.

Later he arrived at Cafe Versailles restaurant in Little Havana where he downed a cup of Cuban coffee.

He quipped “I need it right now.”

“It’s a great time in Miami being the gateway to Latin America” he said addressing a crowd of more than one hundred supporters.

DeSantis promised not to raise taxes and to create new jobs.

“Why do we want to become a state people want to leave?” warned Senator Rubio.

Some supporters in the crowd like that DeSantis has the backing of President Trump.

“Desantis will make America great again like Trump” said supporter Maria Falcon.

“One thing I don’t want is more taxes and I’m afraid Mr Gillum will raise taxes” said DeSantis supporter Eileen Damaso.

Fueled with caffeine, DeSantis left little Havana headed for other private events no doubt gearing up for a long weekend of campaigning.


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