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Democrat Andrew Gillum (left) and Republican Ron DeSantis (right). Photos: Sean Zanni/Patrick McMullan/Getty Images; Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images

The Florida governor's race nominees tell us a lot about the state of politics in 2018. It's officially the race of the new Trump GOP versus the progressive Democratic left.

The state of play: Ultra Trump-loyalist Ron DeSantis will face Democrat Andrew Gillum who campaigned on things like Medicare for All, is backed by both Bernie Sanders and Tom Steyer, and who would be the first black governor of the state.

Picture that contrast in the weeks leading to November. While one candidate touts "standing against socialist dictatorships," another has been endorsed by a socialist Democrat.

  • DeSantis criticized his Republican primary opponent for distancing himself from President Trump after the "Access Hollywood" tape. Gillum spoke for Hillary Clinton at the 2016 Democratic National Convention.
  • DeSantis spent $2.5 million on TV advertising. Gillum spent $598,000.
  • Based on endorsements, DeSantis will be associated with Trump. Gillum will be associated with Sanders, Steyer, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, and George Soros.

Be smart: Midterms are a referendum on the president. If that holds for Floridians in November and the majority of Democratic voters are casting a vote in opposition to the president, that could swing things away from the GOP.

The bottom line: This race is a microcosm of 2018. "The far right is meeting the far left in Florida, and it’s going to be a doozy," as the Tampa Bay Times put it.

Go deeper

Ina Fried, author of Login
59 mins ago - Technology

CES was largely irrelevant this year

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Forced online by the pandemic and overshadowed by the attack on the Capitol, the 2021 edition of CES was mostly an afterthought as media's attention focused elsewhere.

Why it matters: The consumer electronics trade show is the cornerstone event for the Consumer Technology Association and Las Vegas has been the traditional early-January gathering place for the tech industry.

The FBI is tracing a digital trail to Capitol rioters

Illustration: Sarah Grillo

Capitol rioters, eager to share proof of their efforts with other extremists online, have so far left a digital footprint of at least 140,000 images that is making it easier for federal law enforcement officials to capture and arrest them.

The big picture: Law enforcement's use of digital tracing isn't new, and has long been at the center of fierce battles over privacy and civil liberties. The Capitol siege is opening a fresh front in that debate.

Off the Rails

Episode 6: Last stand in Georgia

Photo illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios. Photo: Drew Angerer, Raymond Boyd/Getty Images

Beginning on election night 2020 and continuing through his final days in office, Donald Trump unraveled and dragged America with him, to the point that his followers sacked the U.S. Capitol with two weeks left in his term. Axios takes you inside the collapse of a president with a special series.

Episode 6: Georgia had not backed a Democratic presidential candidate since 1992 and Donald Trump's defeat in this Deep South stronghold, and his reaction to that loss, would help cost Republicans the U.S. Senate as well. Georgia was Trump's last stand.

On Air Force One, President Trump was in a mood. He had been clear he did not want to return to Georgia, and yet somehow he'd been conscripted into another rally on the night of Jan. 4.