Two Democrats who are seeking their party’s nomination for governor are jumping on the issue of gun violence and gun reform in their latest campaign ads. Former Miami Beach Mayor Philip Levine and Orlando-area businessman Chris King both launched new video spots Wednesday morning calling for increased gun control measures.
Levine released a digital ad that his campaign calls a five-figure buy in which he reaffirms his commitment to gun reform. The spot begins with Levine, his wife, Carolina Murciano, and their children sitting on a sofa.
“How much more of this do we have to see,” Levine asks at the start of the video. “Another school shooting and more pictures of grieving parents.”
“Philip and I can’t imagine the pain,” Carolina adds.
The ad goes on to show Levine taking part in a gun control rally in Tallahassee earlier this year and renews his call for “tougher background checks, better screenings and a ban on assault rifles.”
“This year’s grim statistic of one school shooting occurring each week must compel our state to act now,” said Christian Ulvert, Levine’s senior advisor. “After years of NRA-sponsored laws being passed in Tallahassee, the time has come to elect a leader who will stand up for our children and for families throughout Florida.”
Earlier Wednesday, King’s campaign released its own gun reform ad in which he pledges to “shake up the old politics” and “stand up to the NRA.”
The :30 spot starts with the photo of a memorial at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando.
“Two years ago, 49 people were murdered at Pulse nightclub –– and Rick Scott and the Legislature did nothing,” King says. “Then tragedy hit Parkland. But this time, a movement of young people refuses to accept the unacceptable.
The spot shows young protesters who took part in demonstrations and marches after the Parkland shootings.
“I want to shake up the old politics. I’ll stand up to the NRA and hold both parties accountable –– to ban assault rifles and high-capacity magazines, and require background checks on all gun sales,” King goes on to say.
The King gun control spot will begin airing Wednesday in the Gainesville, Jacksonville, Orlando-Daytona Beach-Melbourne, Panama City and West Palm Beach-Fort Pierce television markets.
Polls have consistently shown Levine leading the field of four Democrats seeking their party’s nomination for governor. King has usually placed fourth place in the single digits.
The most recent poll was an internal survey released Tuesday by the Levine campaign. The survey, conducted by Public Policy Polling, gives Levine a 10-point advantage over former U.S. Rep. Gwen Graham, 30 percent to 20 percent. Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum is third with 12 percent, while King received 6 percent.