Former Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum was unsuccessful in his bid for Florida Governor – losing to then Congressman Ron DeSantis in a surprisingly close race. Gillum – an African American — was considered a rising star in the Democratic Party. Some have even promoted him as a potential vice-presidential candidate. There has been talk of future high office and even a Cabinet position if a Democrat wins the White House. Gillum was more recently hired as a contributor to CNN News.
All that is not looking very good today.
Responding to a call, police found Gillum with two other males in a room at the Mondrian Hotel in South Beach. Police were called to the scene to check out a report of an overdose by one of the other individuals. Bags of crystal meth were found at the scene.
According to the police incident report, “Mr. Gillum was unable to communicate with officers due to his inebriated state.” Medics were called “to conduct a welfare check on Gillum.”
In a statement to the Miami Herald, Gillum said he was in Miami to attend a friend’s wedding – and admitted that he had drunk too much alcohol. He denied using meth at that time or at any time.
In his statement, Gillum said:
“I apologize to the people of Florida for the distraction this has caused our movement. I’m thankful to the incredible Miami Beach EMS team for their efforts. I will spend the next few weeks with my family and appreciate privacy during this time.”
But as they say … the plot thickens.
The other two men who were in the room at the time were Travis Dyson, 30, and Aldo Mejias, 54. Mejias said he had loaned his credit card to Dyson to rent the room and arrived later to find Gillum vomiting in the bathroom and Dyson overdosed. It is believed that Mejias called police for help with Dyson – who was subsequently hospitalized.
In a statement to the Miami New Times, Dyson cast doubt on Gillum’s cover-story to the Miami Herald. The Times said Dyson seemed “confused’ about Gillum’s public statement. Dyson said, “I personally was not celebrating a wedding. I don’t know if [Gillum] was in town for a wedding. He did not mention that… we’ve been friends for a while.” Friends?
According to media reports, Dyson is listed on a website – rentmen.com – as a gay escorts. Of course, this does not establish the nature of the Gillum-Dyson friendship, but it does raise questions that beg to be answered. Gillum is alone, stumble-down alcohol drunk – if that is what it was — in a hotel room with bags of crystal meth in the company of a gay escort who was not involved in any wedding celebration AND who has overdosed on the meth — and we are expected to accept this as some innocent happenstance.
In his official statement, Gillum begs to have his privacy respected. I am sure he does. But he has chosen PUBLIC life in politics and the media. He cannot not now hide behind pleas for privacy. As the expression goes, Gillum has some ‘splaining to do.
FOOTNOTE: Gillum has now entered a rehab program.
So, there ‘tis.