Is Andrew Gillum Gay? Alleged Leaked Photos From A Drug-Fueled Miami Party Raise Questions

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Is Andrew Gillum Gay? Alleged Leaked Photos From A Drug-Fueled Miami Party Raise Questions
Entertainment And News

Andrew Gillum once served as the mayor of Tallahassee, Florida, and quickly became a political wunderkind. His background was commendable and he garnered a reputation for being devoted to the greater service of the public. 

In 2018, Gillum became a national figure when he earned the Democratic nomination for governor of Florida. And though he would ultimately lose to Rick DeSantis — who is the current governor of Florida — his name still rang bells in the political arena nationwide. 

But the "leaked" photos from a Miami hotel room that featured a man partying with two other men in a Miami Beach hotel room has people believing that Gillum was involved in a drug-fueled sex party. And while it's confirmed there was indeed "partying" in a Miami Beach hotel room on March 13, 2020, the alleged photos have not been verified as being of the former gubernatorial candidate, but it's prompted a lot of questions on social media — specifically: Is Andrew Gillum gay?

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Let's look at what we know about this scandal — and what these allleged photos reveal.

1. Is Andrew Gillum gay? Social media wants to suggest he is. 

On March 13, 2020, Gillum was allegedly present during involving crystal meth at a Miami Beach hotel. Sources with direct knowledge of the incident involving crystal meth told the press that Gillum's name is, indeed, on the incident report and that the date of birth matches that of the former gubernatorial candidate (so as to confirm that it's not another man with the same name). The police were called to the hotel room to respond to what is being called a "cardiac distress" incident. Gillum was not the victim involved in the "cardiac distress." The man who called the police, Aldo Mejias, said that Gillum was in the hotel room "under the influence of an unknown substance." When the police arrived, Gillum was throwing up but was otherwise in stable condition. 

Also on March 13, 2020, photos featuring a man naked and sprawled out on the floor while covered in various bodily fluids, were released to the press. So, an incident of "partying" in a hotel room in Miami Beach, FL, did indeed happen — which, in and of itself, is not unusual. Various press outlets have reported that drugs — both prescription drugs, and illegal drugs such as crystal meth — were found around the hotel room.

However, what makes these photos newsworthy is that the man in the photos is allegedly Andrew Gillum, thus suggesting he was in the room with two other men "partying."

It bears stating that while the incident at the Mondrian Hotel in South Beach, Miami is confirmed, the man in the photos has not as of this writing been authenticated to be Gillum by police officials.

But that hasn't stopped far-right accounts on social media from suggesting that the photos are not only of Gillum, but proof-positive that Gillum is gay. One Twitter user suggested that the hotel room pictured was Gillum's "after a night of gay sex." Another said that Gillum is a "disgraced politician" thanks to the so-called "gay photos." And still another joked that Don Lemon — an "out" gay man who is also Gillum's colleague at CNN — "would have been there" if he'd known that Gillum "gets down like that." 

2. The other man in the photos is a male escort in Miami, Florida. 

The press has identified the other man in the sordid photos with Gillum as Travis Dyson. He's 30 years old, and he's a male escort based in Miami, Florida.

3. Was the "leak" a political hit by a far-right blogger?

Even though the photos of the man that looks like Gillum "partying" in a Miami hotel room with a male escort were certainly newsworthy, it didn't take long for experienced political commentators to wonder why, exactly, these photos were being released now, long after Gillum's run for governor was over. It turns out that the person who first started peddling the photos was none other than Jacob Engels, a far-right blogger. Engels said that he got the photos from Enrique Tarrio, a congressional candidate in South Florida and a member of known hate group, The Proud Boys. In addition, while one of the outlets that published the photos claims that they received the photos under the Freedom of Information Act, it would be impossible to get those photos since they're currently being used in a criminal investigation.

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4. No charges have been filed. 

As of this writing, no charges have been filed against anyone in the photos. However, Miami Beach police are currently investigating the source of the "leak."

5. Gillum's currently in rehab, and the other man is currently in the hospital.

Two days after the incident in the photos, Gillum announced he would be retreating from public life and entering rehab, not for a drug addiction, but for an alcohol problem he said that he developed after he lost the gubernatorial race. The other man, Dyson, is in the hospital as of this writing.  

6. Gillum issued two statements involving the incident. 

Gillum, a married father of three, issued a statement that denied the use of illegal drugs. He also said that while he had too much to drink at a friend's wedding reception, he didn't partake in any illegal drugs but seemed to skirt around the issue of a drug-fueled "party" with a male escort. 

"I was in Miami last night for a wedding celebration when first responders were called to assist one of my friends,” Gillum said. “While I had too much to drink, I want to be clear that I have never used methamphetamines. I apologize to the people of Florida for the distraction this has caused our movement.”

Two days later, Gillum issued a follow-up statement. 

"After a conversation with my family and deep reflection, I have made the decision to seek help, guidance and enter a rehabilitation facility at this time. This has been a wake-up call for me. Since my race for governor ended, I fell into a depression that has led to alcohol abuse. I witnessed my father suffer from alcoholism and I know the damaging effects it can have when untreated. I also know that alcoholism is often a symptom of deeper struggles. I am committed to doing personal work to heal fully and show up in the world as a more complete person," he said in a statement. "I now need to firmly focus on myself and my family. I will be stepping down from all public facing roles for the foreseeable future. I want to apologize to my family, friends and the people of Florida who have supported me and put their faith in me over the years."

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Bernadette Giacomazzo is an editor, writer, publicist, and photographer whose work has appeared in Teen Vogue, People, Us Weekly, The Source, XXL, HipHopDX, The Los Angeles Times, The New York Post, BET.com, and more.