Ron DeSantis says vote for black opponent would 'monkey this up'

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In a sign that the next 10 weeks could eclipse past campaigns in the nation's largest political battleground, Florida's race for governor swiftly became heated and personal after the surprising primary victories of Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum and U.S. Rep. Ron DeSantis.

"It has everything to do with whether we want Florida to continue to go in a good direction, building off this success, or do we want to turn to left-wing, socialist policies, which will absolutely devastate our state", DeSantis said.

"It has zero to do with race", DeSantis, who is vacating his seat in Florida's 6th District to run for governor, told Fox News' Sean Hannity on prime time Wednesday night, just hours after he made the "monkey" remark.

"Well, in the handbook of Donald Trump, they no longer do whistle calls", said Gillum.

Gillum responded by decrying what he called the "gutter politics" of DeSantis that he said echoes the influence of Trump on American politics. "To characterize it as anything else is absurd", his spokesman Stephen Lawson said.

On Baer's race, Parker said the race wasn't about sexual orientation or gender identity, but about LGBT candidates providing "perspectives and priorities that resonate with voters".

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Wendell was not present at the royal nuptials in May , and neither was Thomas Sr. due to a reported heart attack. Meghan and Wendell worked together for five years on the set of " Suits ".

Another warning for Democrats: They were outvoted Tuesday, with Republican ballots exceeding Democratic ballots by more than 100,000 in Florida's closed primaries that don't allow independents to vote.

Their message comes a day after DeSantis' controversial words were used to discuss Gillum's policies during a live television interview on Fox News. "I regret that his mentor in politics is Donald Trump".

"I actually believe that Florida and its rich diversity are going to be looking for a governor who's going to bring us together, not divide us".

Gillum didn't make race an issue in the primary. "But I think he should also apologize because obviously a lot of Floridians and probably a lot of Americans are offended by it given the circumstances", Curbelo said.

"We were counted out every step of the way", Gillum said. And Republicans also argue that Gillum is simply too liberal, with his advocacy for universal health care and scrapping the current iteration of the ICE immigration enforcement agency.

Gillum, meanwhile, relied on a grassroots campaign in the big-money Democratic primary.

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