Gubernatorial candidate and Mayor of Tallahassee, Florida, Andrew Gillum shot back at President Donald Trump after he slammed the city at an event in Orlando, Fla. Monday.
“Hey @realDonaldTrump – don’t come to my state and talk trash about my city while we are preparing for a Category 3 hurricane. We need a partner right now, not a partisan,” tweeted Gillum.
Hey @realDonaldTrump — don't come to my state and talk trash about my city while we are preparing for a Category 3 hurricane. We need a partner right now, not a partisan.
— Andrew Gillum (@AndrewGillum) October 8, 2018
Florida is preparing for a disaster as Hurricane Michael bears down on the state. Michael is projected to be the most dangerous storm to threaten the area in more than a decade.
Trump’s comments were made during a speech at the annual convention for the International Association of Chiefs of Police. During his talk, Trump wouldn’t refer to Gillum by name, instead referring to him as Rep. Ron DeSantis’ opponent while suggesting that Tallahassee is a haven for crime in the state.
“His opponent runs a place that has a lot of problems, and I know it very well, but it’s got a lot of problems, tremendous corruption, tremendous crime,” said Trump.
Trump’s comments follow an earlier claim by DeSantis. In September, the Republican opponent said that Gillum presides over a city with “the highest crime in Florida four years running.”
Gillum has disputed the claim stating that Leon County, where Tallahassee sits, saw a decrease in crime with 2017 marking the lowest crime rate in four years.
Trump went on to announce grants in the amount of $42.4 million dollars that will be given to the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy’s High-Intensity Drug Trafficking Areas program, stating that it would help quell drug crime in Florida, warning that without it, things could get worse.
“Florida will become another Venezuela, and that is not good,” said Trump.
Despite Trump’s claims, crime statistics from the Florida Department of Law Enforcement support Gillam’s claims and show a 15 percent drop in crime in Leon County from 2016 to 2017.
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Rachel Lucio is a freelance writer in Austin, TX. She has been writing professionally since 1991, and has covered state, local and national government for more than a decade.