Miami Beach Mayor Philip Levine enters Florida governor's race

Democrat, elected mayor in 2013, raises more than $2 million of his own money

MIAMI BEACH, Fla. – Democratic Miami Beach Mayor and multimillionaire businessman Philip Levine is running for Florida governor.

Levine, 55, has spent months building up to Wednesday's announcement, putting more than $2.6 million of his own money into a political committee and touring the state talking to Democrats and other groups.

During Wednesday's announcement, Levine praised his time in office in Miami Beach.

"As mayor of Miami Beach, we didn't ignore rising sea levels with rhetoric. We took action with state-of-the-art pumps, infrastructure and renewable energy programs that are now being studied and recognized as a role model for cities around the world," Levine said. 

Levine said he hopes to continue his efforts as governor of Florida. 

"As governor, I will make Florida an international leader, not just in climate change and sea level rise, but also in solar and renewable energy," he said.  

Levine built his fortune off a marketing company that began with $500 in capital and expanded to provide in-cabin magazines and television content for cruise lines. It had $400 million in annual revenue when he sold it in 2000.

Levine is CEO of a similar company that provides media for Royal Caribbean International. He was elected Miami Beach mayor in 2013 after spending $2 million of his own money on the race.

Republican Gov. Rick Scott is leaving office due to term limits.

About the Authors: