Although Commissioner Nikki Fried (D-FL) may be the progressive choice in Florida's Democratic gubernatorial primary race, US Rep. Charlie Crist (D-FL) has pulled in notable progressive endorsements from around Florida. Just this week, progressive Democrat Fried responded to an unexpected shift in the race.
At a press conference this week in Fort Lauderdale, The Floridian Publisher Javier Manjarres asked Nikki Fried about the endorsement paralleled she had with Rep. Crist considering how moderate and Republican he has been in the past.
Fried's response not only reaffirmed that she is still potentially perceived as THE progressive choice for the nomination but also took a jab at Crist's party affiliation history that has frequently made him subject to scrutiny.
"This is exactly why I know I am the best shot as our Democratic nominee, because I am true to who I am, to what I believe in. I don't say things, or take positions because I want to win an election. I take positions and I'm supportive of issues because I want to make a difference," said Fried.
Fried also took the time to elaborate on her ground campaign, saying, "What support that we are getting on the ground is tremendous. The people on the ground that are working and know that these issues are important to them, are the same issues that I have been fighting on my entire life. If Democrats want a fighting chance in November, they have only one option, and that's to have me as their nominee."
Arguably the most progressive member of the Florida House, State Rep. Anna Eskamani (D-47) officially backed Charlie Crist for governor. This surprised many as she is considered by some to be even farther Left than Fried herself.
Surprisingly, State Senator Annette Taddeo (D-40) dropped out of the primary race, making it a classic head-to-head match up between Fried and Crist. Taddeo's departure from the race could shake up the party support in favor of Fried, who has a more progressive appeal.