Once considered a rising star in the Democratic Party, former Florida gubernatorial candidate Andrew Gillum announced he is withdrawing from politics and will enter a rehabilitation facility.
"This has been a wake-up call for me," Gillum, who was found in a Miami Beach hotel room inebriated and with a man suspected of overdosing on crystal meth, wrote in a statement Sunday, according to Politico. "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 will be stepping down from all public facing roles for the foreseeable future."
Gillum, 40, a husband and father of three young children, also has resigned from his CNN role as a paid commentator, per the report.
Miami Beach Police reportedly found Gillum early Friday in a Mondrian South Beach hotel room with another man. Three bags of suspected crystal meth were recovered from the room, per police.
Gillum said he was in town to officiate a wedding, which he did not show up for, and had been drinking but not doing drugs.
Gov. Ron DeSantis, R-Fla., defeated Gillum in a tight 2018 race.
"He spoke to the issues better than anyone we've had," former president of the Democratic Progressive Caucus of Florida Susan Smith told Politico. "The way he spoke and the knowledge he had about working people and the most vulnerable will be sorely missed."
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