Racist robocalls hit Florida with black minstrel-style voice mocking Gillum

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Voter in Florida on Friday were reportedly exposed to racist robocalls mocking Democratic gubernatorial hopeful Andrew Gillum in a black minstrel-style voice. 

The calls were apparently issued by a neo-Nazi group based in Idaho known as Road to Power, which also reportedly paid to send white nationalist robocalls in Iowa regarding Mollie Tibbetts, a college student who was allegedly murdered by an undocumented immigrant.

The Florida robocall reportedly featured a minstrel-style voice mocking Gillum with jungle noises that played in the background, The Tallahassee Democrat first reported.

{mosads}Gillum’s opponent in the governor’s race, Rep. Ron DeSantis (R), on Wednesday prompted fierce backlash after he warned Florida voters not to “monkey this up” by voting for Gillum. 

“Let’s build off the success we’ve had on Gov. [Rick] Scott. The last thing we need to do is to monkey this up by trying to embrace a socialist agenda with huge tax increases bankrupting the state. That is not going to work,” DeSantis said in an interview with Fox News.

DeSantis’s campaign quickly pushed back on critics, saying it was “absurd” to claim that the Florida Republican was doing anything other than criticizing Gillum’s agenda.

The DeSantis campaign also denounced the racist robocalls mocking his opponent in a statement obtained by Politico on Friday.

“This is absolutely appalling and disgusting — and hopefully whoever is behind this has to answer for this despicable action,” spokesman Stephen Lawson said in the statement. “Our campaign has and will continue to focus solely on the issues that Floridians care about and uniting our state as we continue to build on our success.” 

Geoff Burgan, a spokesman for Gillum’s campaign, also issued a statement to the publication condemning the robocalls. 

“This is reprehensible — and could only have come from someone with intentions to fuel hatred and seek publicity. Please don’t give it undeserved attention,” Burgan said.

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