DeSantis endorsed by First Coast sheriffs

Jacksonville visit comes day after Andrew Gillum's stop at UNF


JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – With two weeks until Election Day, the leading candidates in the Florida gubernatorial race are working to earn votes in Jacksonville.

On Tuesday, Ron DeSantis (R, Florida) appeared at the Police Memorial Building, surrounding himself with members of law enforcement for their endorsement, including Jacksonville Sheriff Mike Williams.

"Make no mistake. Ron DeSantis is the pro-law enforcement, pro-public safety candidate in this race," Williams said.

Williams was joined by colleagues from Clay, Nassau Bradford, Citrus and Gilcrest counties.

"I give my open and heartfelt endorsement to Ron DeSantis for the highest office in the state of Florida to be our next governor," Clay County Sheriff Darryl Daniels said.

DeSantis stood side-by-side with the group of law enforcement members. The endorsements gave the Republican nominee a chance to talk about the support he's received from police departments across the state.

"They (police) know I'm somebody who is committed to safe communities. I'm committed to stand by the men and women in law enforcement," DeSantis said. "I support them and I support their mission, which I understand can be a very difficult one."

A day before DeSantis' visit, Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum (D, Florida) spoke at a rally in Orlando and in Jacksonville at the University of North Florida. Gillum received the endorsement of former Vice President Joe Biden – and U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson.

DeSantis and Gillum are in a heated and very close competition down the stretch to November 6th, with accusations of lies and attacks.

"If you want to be governor of the state of Florida, you've got to be governor for all the people. That means you've got to go to some uncomfortable places and answer some uncomfortable questions," Gillum said. "That's what we're trying to do."

Gillum's staff says he has the endorsement of sheriffs in Leon, Alachua, Orange, Osceola and Gadsden counties.

DeSantis will make another visit to Jacksonville on Thursday to appear with Vice President Mike Pence. The event takes place at the Prime Osborn Convention Center at 4 p.m.

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