While Gillum—who is currently the mayor of Tallahassee—lacked the institutional backing and immense personal wealth of his Democratic opponents, he overcame this cash deficit with a massive surge in voter turnout, which was attributed to his unwavering embrace of popular policies like Medicare for All and raising the minimum wage.
“My opponents have spent, together, over $90 million in this race. We have spent four [million],” Gillum told supporters at an event on Saturday. “Money doesn’t vote. People do.”
Gillum also won the support of nationally prominent progressives like New York congressional candidate Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.).
In a statement Tuesday night, Sanders applauded Gillum’s “powerful” grassroots campaign, noting that “he’s not just working hard to win an election, he has laid out a vision for a new course for the state of Florida and our country. No one person can take on the economic and political elites on their own.”