A breakdown of the Democratic primary ballot

Carly Kramer

Looking to vote Democrat in the 2018 primary elections? Below are descriptions of the party platforms for the Democratic candidates.

Graphic by Sam Chaney

Governor and Lt. Governor

The Governor serves as the Chief Executive for the state. They are in charge of regulating bills, enforcing statewide laws, planning a budget and convening legislature. The annual salary for the position is $130,273 according to runforoffice.org. The Lt. Governor reports to the governor in the executive branch. They are responsible for serving in place of the governor during an interim. The annual salary is $124,851 according to runforoffice.org.

Term: Four years

Andrew Gillum

Gillum has served as mayor of Tallahassee since 2014. At the Democratic Primary Gubernatorial Town Hall Forum, Gillum said he was previously endorsed by U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders. Gillum would push for affordable health care, according to his website. At the Town Hall Forum, he said he would make minimum wage $15 if elected. He also said he would like to make college and trade school more affordable. According to him, if a student in need of financial assistance is willing to work in Florida, the state will pay for their education.

Gwen Graham

Graham previously served as U.S. Representative of Florida’s second congressional district. Her campaign advocates for making decisions based on facts, according to her discussion at the Town Hall Forum. Like Gillum, Graham emphasized improving healthcare and the Florida education system. At the Town Hall Forum, she discussed her idea of a public option, which decreases the costs of health care in order to invest more in education. According to Graham’s website, she would like to end high-stakes testing in Florida schools in order to have teachers be more in charge.

Jeff Greene

Greene, a Harvard alum, has spent his career as a business person focusing in real estate. His campaign focuses mainly on improving education. During the Town Hall Forum, he pointed out that 56 percent of Florida third-graders are literate. He is advocating for an additional year of Pre-K for Florida students. Greene wants his emphasis on education to extend past primary school in order to help students fund their higher education. He said that financial aid helped him, so he understands the need for it in Florida.

Chris King

King places the emphasis of his campaign on gun control and the repeal of the death penalty. He says the end of the death penalty will result in increased funds for education and additional law enforcement. King proposed a bullet tax in Florida in order to work toward preventing gun violence. King also discussed his views of legalizing marijuana in Florida, saying legalization and regulation will reform the criminal justice system. King also wants to push for affordable housing, as he says the cost of living is too high for incomes lower than $15 an hour.

Philip Levine

The mayor of Miami Beach advocates for the legalization of marijuana in limited quantities for people over 21. He says that black people are four times more likely to be arrested for possession of marijuana than whites. Levine estimates that this change will generate about $600 million in revenue annually. He says these funds will help improve education, marijuana research and those in need of substance abuse treatment. Education-wise, Levine advocates for the decrease of standardized testing and the increase of teacher salaries. Like many of the other Democratic candidates, Levine says he will work to provide more affordable healthcare if elected. Levine also expressed his stance on gun violence, saying he’d ban assault weapons if elected.

Alex “Lundy” Lundmark

Lundmark reportedly joined the race for governor when he wasn’t happy with the other candidates in the running. Lundmark is in favor of an assisted-suicide program, according to his questionnaire with Florida Conference of Catholic Bishops. Like other candidates, he supports more accessible healthcare and affordable housing.

John Wetherbee

Wetherbee mainly advocates for stricter gun laws, a better education system and the clean-up of water waste. Wetherbee previously worked as a mechanical engineer after graduating from the University of Florida. He promises to protect the wildlife of Florida and to ban assault rifles.


Attorney General

The Attorney General is the leader of the Florida Department of Legal Affairs. They are responsible for citizen protection, prosecution, development of legal opinion and being a representative in statewide cases of litigation. The annual salary is $128,872 according to runforoffice.org.

Term: Four years

Sean Shaw

Shaw mainly wants to challenge the status quo of what past attorney generals have done. He says he wants to work with law enforcement more closely to increase security in schools and communities. Shaw also pledges to focus on preventing human trafficking and online predators. According to his website, Shaw would fight against opioids and find prevention treatments.

Ryan Torrens

Torrens promises to fight for senior rights, as he says they are commonly victimized in financial scams. He also prioritizes the safety of citizens by honoring their due process rights, according to his website. He would like to ensure that innocent people are not held accountable for accused crimes. Like Shaw, Torrens would reportedly hold drug traffickers responsible for the opioid issue in Florida.


Commissioner of Agriculture

The Commissioner of Agriculture oversees the agricultural industry and consumer service organizations. They also manage 13 agricultural regulation divisions. According to runforoffice.org, the annual salary for the position is $128,972.

Term: Four years

Nicole “Nikki” Fried

Fried vows to legalize medical marijuana in Florida. According to her website, 72 percent of Floridians voted to approve the legalization, but Governor Rick Scott has not enacted this change. Fried also wants to work to prevent Citrus Greening, which causes decreased crops and death of infected trees. She says she’ll do this by working with farmers and University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences to solve the problem. She also wants to work to ensure that school lunches are fresh and nutritious. Fried also says she’ll work with local government to prepare Florida to combat effects of climate change and sea-level rise.

Jeffrey Duane Porter

Homestead Mayor Porter vows to prevent the theft of credit card information at gas pumps in Florida. He says he will do this by giving resources to gas station owners. Porter also pledges to help Florida combat climate change to improve the agricultural industry. He would also reportedly ban offshore drilling on the Florida coast and to work to oversee gun permits by implementing more extensive background checks.

Roy David Walker

Walker would like to work in conservation, as he says the current policies do not prioritize public beaches. He also says he would work to improve food and nutrition in Florida, vowing to ensure free lunches in public schools. Like Porter, he pledges to have thorough background checks for a Concealed Weapons Permit. He supports the ban on assault rifles, according to his website. He would also implement gas pumps with chip readers, as well as educate Florida citizens on credit card theft prevention.


The primary election is on Tuesday, Aug. 28. Early voting began Monday, Aug. 13 and will last until Aug. 26.

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