Report: Undercover FBI agents investigating corruption gave Gillum tickets to 'Hamilton'

By Emilee Speck - Digital journalist

ORLANDO, Fla. - New records released Tuesday reveal that undercover FBI agents gave Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum a ticket to the Broadway show "Hamilton," in 2016. The documents differ from Gillum's account on Sunday when he denied during a Florida gubernatorial debate that the tickets were a gift.

The Tampa Bay Times reports that an undercover FBI agent posing as a developer was investigating city corruption when he gifted Gillum a ticket.

Among the trove of documents released are text messages between Gillum and former lobbyist Adam Corey.

"Mike Miller and the crew have tickets for us for Hamilton tonight at 8 p.m.," Corey texted Gillum on Aug. 10, 2016.

Miller, it turned out, was an undercover FBI agent.

Corey turned more than 100 pages of records to the ethics commission, which is investigating trips to Costa Rica and New York that Gillum took in 2016, reports the Times.

Gillum's opponent Rep. Ron DeSantis was in Orlando Tuesday for an event and spoke to reporters about the new information.

“I specifically was asking for answers about, you know, getting these gifts like Broadway tickets, was it from an undercover FBI agent or did Andrew Gillum pay for it?” DeSantis said about the exchange during Sunday's debate. “He basically said he paid for it. Well now we saw documents come out today that it was from the undercover FBI agent.”

Gillum called the controversy over the tickets a "side show."

The Andrew Gillum for Governor Campaign released the following statement from Mayor Andrew Gillum: 
 
"These records vindicate and add more evidence that at every turn I was paying my own way or was with my family, for all trips, including picking up tickets from my brother, Marcus, who was with a group of his own friends," Gillum said in an email to reporters. "But this isn't about a Broadway show, it's about a sideshow, because Ron DeSantis and his associates have no vision, no healthcare plan, and are running the most false, negative campaign in Florida history. Floridians deserve better." 

Gillum has repeatedly said the FBI told him he was not a focus of the probe, which centers on the relationships between developers and lobbyists in the state capital, including one with longstanding connections to Gillum.

"Did you pay for the Hamilton tickets?" DeSantis asked Gillum during their first debate Sunday.

Gillum insisted he's always paid his own way as he came up as a young political star, but never directly answered DeSantis. His campaign has said the ticket was given to him by his brother Marcus, who attended the show with him, the agent and Corey, who volunteered as finance chair on Gillum's 2014 mayoral campaign.

"We all have friends that sometimes let us down," Gillum said of Corey.

CNN contributed to this report.

Copyright 2018 by WKMG ClickOrlando - All rights reserved.