Democratic candidate for governor Jeff Greene, who didn’t enter the race until earlier this month, is flexing his wealth and jumping into the contest in a big way. The Palm Beach billionaire announced Tuesday morning he’s launching his first media buy, a $2.9 million ad campaign that will feature two spots.
In one of the ads (see below), Greene is seen arguing with President Donald Trump at the Trump Palm Beach golf course in December of 2016. The announcer in the spot says Greene “is the only candidate in America willing to stand up to Trump in his own dining room.”
Greene is seen walking across the room when Trump spots Greene and starts yelling at him for donating to Hillary Clinton’s campaign and for making derogatory remarks about Trump on national TV. Greene’s wife was sitting two tables away and took video of the exchange.
The other spot is a bio that highlights Greene’s rise from a struggling bus-boy to a billionaire real estate investor.
When he entered the Democratic primary for governor in early June he promised “a self-funded campaign to offer a breakthrough voice and vision for Florida after polls revealed most Democratic voters remain undecided.”
But, polls also show most voters don’t know who Jeff Greene is, even though he ran for the Democratic nomination for the U.S. Senate in 2010. He spent $24 million of his own money in a contest in which he finished a distant second to Kendrick Meek.
Greene isn’t the only candidate in the Democratic race who has substantial wealth and isn’t afraid to use it to win the nomination. Former South Beach Mayor Philip Levine, a multi-millionaire, has spent $10 million on campaign spots. Orlando-area businessman Chris King, also a multi-millionaire has been using his own money to help fund his campaign.
In Tuesday’s release announcing the media buys, the Greene campaign says it’s willing to spend “whatever it takes” to win the governor’s race
“Policy aside, Greene’s unique appeal to Florida Democrats lies in his ability to spend whatever it takes to go toe-to-toe with historically better-funded Republicans in the general election to help Democrats regain control of the Governor’s mansion for the first time in 20 years without being beholden to special interest groups.” the release said.