“We can build a state that gives power back to you,” Fried said in the video. “Listen, this won’t be easy. Those in power will do whatever harm it takes to stay there. But I have spent my whole life taking on the system. I am unafraid, I’m tested, I am ready.”
She added: “I’m Nikki Fried, an underestimated Floridian like you. And I’m asking you to break the system by electing me the next governor of the state of Florida.”
She does not mention DeSantis by name in her announcement video.
The primary between Fried and Crist could be contentious, setting up a fight between competing visions for the Democratic Party.
Fried is a lifelong Floridian. She was born and raised in Miami and attended the University of Florida, where she received her law degree. She has spent much of her career as a public defender and defense attorney, including a stint with the Alachua County Public Defender’s Office. She narrowly won her current position in 2018, becoming the only Democrat to hold statewide office in Florida, which has moved right in recent years.
Fried is expected to center her campaign on the ability to win in Florida — routinely arguing that because she is the only Democrat to win statewide, she is the best positioned to defeat DeSantis, who has seen his profile rise in recent years.
Democrats are eager to take on DeSantis, who has tied himself to former President Donald Trump and is said to be considering a presidential run in 2024.