U.S. Rep. Kendrick Meek (D-Miami), a candidate for the Democratic nomination for U.S. Senate, speaks with supporters at First Watch restaurant in Naples on Thursday, August 12, 2010. Meek met with a small and enthusiastic crowd of campaign volunteers and supporters at the breakfast cafe, part of a state-wide bus tour that ends this weekend with a rally in Miami where former President Bill Clinton is expected to make an appearance and show his support for the former Florida Highway Patrolman.
During an hour-long meet-and-greet with supporters, Meek spoke about his opposition to off-shore oil drilling, improving medical care for seniors, his support of bringing the troops home from Afghanistan, increasing benefits for veterans, balancing the budget, investing in and recruiting new and environmentally friendly energy companies to Florida to create jobs for the working class, and building a better transportation system for Floridians.
Meek, a former college football player and Florida Highway Patrolman, currently represents the 17th Congressional District. The latest polls who Meek in a statistical tie for the Democratic nomination against billionair Jeff Greene, who Meek dismisses as a Republican.
"That's why we call it the "Real Dem Express - so that people don't get confused as to who is the real Democrat in this race," Meek said in regards to the Winnegago he has been riding in throughout Florida for the past week. "I am running against a billionaire with a capital "B", who was a Republican two years ago. I don't want to look up at the debates for U.S. Senate and see three Republicans debating each other."
Photo by Tristan Spinski