Democratic candidate concedes defeat in Florida

Democrat Andrew Gillum congratulates Republican Ron DeSantis for winning Florida governor race.

Ben Ariel ,

Andrew Gillum
Andrew Gillum

Democrat Andrew Gillum on Saturday conceded defeat in the race for Florida governor and congratulated Republican Ron DeSantis, The Associated Press reported.

Gillum posted a live video to Facebook in which he congratulated DeSantis. Gillum had conceded to DeSantis on election night, but retracted it after the margin between the two candidates narrowed.

The race went to a legally required recount, but after an initial machine recount DeSantis still led Gillum by more than 30,000 votes.

Gillum, who is Tallahassee’s mayor, did not say what he plans to do next but stressed he will remain politically active, adding “the fight for Florida continues.”

Gillum’s announcement came hours after President Donald Trump said on Twitter that Gillum will be a “strong Democrat warrior” and a “force to reckon with.”

DeSantis is a long-time supporter of Israel. Last week he told the Israel Hayom newspaper that his first overseas trip as governor of Florida will be to Israel and promised to be aggressive in the fight against the anti-Israel Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement.

During his time in the House of Representatives, DeSantis sponsored the 2013 Palestinian Accountability Act which called for the withholding of US aid to the Palestinian Authority until the PA officially recognizes Israel as a Jewish state and cuts ties with the Gaza-based terror group Hamas.

DeSantis promoted the relocation of the US embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv Jerusalem, saying that Americans were “excited to see the embassy move”.

In 2017, DeSantis joined other lawmakers in forming the Congressional Israel Victory Caucus.