The winner of Florida’s governor’s race is a woman with no formal education

Andrew Gillum's grandmother keeps offering up some of the best lines on the campaign trail
Ella Baker Jackson and her husband Allen at the 1970 wedding of Gillum's parents Frances and Charles Gillum.
Ella Baker Jackson and her husband Allen at the 1970 wedding of Gillum's parents Frances and Charles Gillum.
Published Oct. 29, 2018|Updated Oct. 29, 2018

It can't be easy for Ron DeSantis, having to run against two candidates.

He has to contend with Andrew Gillum, maybe the most charismatic Democratic nominee in decades. On top of that the Republican nominee must compete with a wise quote machine, Ella Baker Jackson.

She is Gillum's late grandmother. She died in `1991, but she and her folksy maxims keep popping up on the campaign trail.

“My grandmother used to say, ‘A hit dog will holler,’ Gillum said after DeSantis in a televised debate last week lost his temper over a question about people with whom he associates.

Gillum's maternal grandmother used to watch over him when his parents were working in Miami. She  apparently ingrained a lot of proverbs into Gillum.

"My grandmother used to say, 'When you wrestle with pigs, you both get dirty, but the pig likes it.'" he said recently.

He invokes her all the time.

"My grandmother taught me that if we were going to get anywhere in life, we would get there together."

"As my grandmother used to say, 'always tell the truth, because when you tell the truth, you don't have to worry about lies. You don't have to worry about covering up for lies.'"

"My grandmother used to say 'crying shame.' Because some shames are worth crying about."

In fact, Gillum's main campaign slogan – Bring It Home –  came from Ella Baker Jackson. a product of the Jim Crow South and the first in her family to attend grade school.  Gillum cites her at the close of nearly every campaign speech, recounting how she would anoint his forehead with oil before sending him out the door.

"I can still hear my grandmother's voice. She'd say, 'Go to school. Mind your teachers. Get your lesson. And one day bring that education home. Bring it home for your little brother and your little sister, who don't know what an education is yet. Bring it home for that little boy down the street that you play with. God knows where he's going to end up. Bring it home for your mother and your father who get up every day and get out there and work on somebody else's job.' …"