Bloggers
"Mayor Andrew Gillum says he’s indefinitely suspending his campaign for governor in light of a fatal shooting in Tallahassee at a yoga studio on Friday."  

Bloggers on Saturday, November 3rd, 2018 in

False

Andrew Gillum did not 'indefinitely' suspend his campaign for Florida governor

Florida Democratic gubernatorial candidate Andrew Gillum speaks during a rally on the campus of the University of Central Florida in Orlando, Fla., on Saturday, Nov. 3, 2018. (Stephen M. Dowell/Orlando Sentinel via AP)

A viral blog post claims that Andrew Gillum, the mayor of Tallahassee and Democratic nominee in the Florida governor race is "indefinitely suspending his campaign for governor in light of a fatal shooting in Tallahassee at a yoga studio on Friday." The article, posted to the site The Grio on Nov. 3, notes Gillum’s response to Friday’s shooting.

"I’m deeply appreciative of law enforcement's quick response to the shooting at the yoga facility in Tallahassee today. No act of gun violence is acceptable. I'm in close communication with law enforcement officials and will be returning to Tallahassee tonight," Gillum tweeted Friday night.

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The blog post does little to justify its misleading headline and lead paragraph.

The Grio article doesn’t cite any source for Gillum’s announcement to suspend his campaign "indefinitely," but does outline what took place during Friday’s shooting where Scott Paul Beierle killed two people and wounded five in a yoga studio in Tallahassee before killing himself, according to the Guardian.

The Grio post notes that the gunman "reportedly had a history of arrests for grabbing women," and links to a USA Today article published Nov. 3 that digs into Beierle’s background. Emails sent to The Grio Saturday all bounced back. An email sent to the author of the article and messages sent to Gillum’s campaign were not immediately returned.

Gillum’s tweet from Friday is quoted in the article, along with remarks the Tallahassee Democrat reported he made near where the shooting occurred.

The Grio’s post is similar to the Nov. 2 New York Daily News article with the headline, "Florida gubernatorial candidate Andrew Gillum suspends campaign after 2 dead in Tallahassee shooting."

The Guardian wrote in its Nov. 3 article that Gillum "tweeted that he was leaving the campaign trail to return to Tallahassee." However, there’s no evidence that Gillum is "indefinitely suspending his campaign for governor" following Friday’s shooting like The Grio’s post claims.

In fact, Gillum is still campaigning.

On Saturday afternoon, Palm Beach Post political reporter George Bennett tweeted photos of Gillum at a Jimmy Buffett concert being held to garner support for Gillum and Sen. Bill Nelson. The concert in West Palm Beach was being held "to rally voters before Election Day on Tuesday," according to a Nov. 1 Miami Herald article announcing the concert.

Bennett tweeted pictures of Gillum with Norman Lear and Nelson, noting that both Gillum and Nelson "went with the khaki/blue shirt combo" for the rally.

Gillum also retweeted Bay News 9 and News 13 Florida capitol reporter Troy Kinsey’s Nov. 3 tweet that showed Gillum onstage speaking to the crowd in West Palm Beach.

Similarly, the Orlando Sentinel reported Nov. 2 that Gillum was scheduled to join other politicians and celebrities at the University of Central Florida to rally students Saturday.

In campaign press releases sent Saturday, Gillum’s campaign said campaign events would be taking place throughout the day.

"On Saturday, November 3, the Gillum for Governor ‘Bring It Home’ bus tour will continue with stops across South and Central Florida. Virginia Governor Ralph Northam will campaign for Mayor Gillum in Lake Worth, followed by a "Get Out the Vote" event at UCF and concluding the day at a Jimmy Buffett GOTV concert in West Palm Beach," a campaign email sent at 12:06 a.m. on Nov. 3 said.

According to the email, Gillum was scheduled to speak in both Orlando and West Palm Beach Saturday. Gillum’s campaign also touted endorsements from politicians and sent out notices about more campaign events in additional emails Saturday.

A Nov. 3 Spectrum News 13 story also showed what Gillum was up to Saturday, with time stamped updates.

Our Ruling

A post from The Grio claimed that Gillum is "indefinitely suspending his campaign for governor in light of a fatal shooting in Tallahassee at a yoga studio on Friday." While Gillum did leave the campaign trail to return to Tallahassee and met with some of the victims, he is not ending his campaign for governor because of the shooting.

We rate this claim False.

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