ALTAMONTE SPRINGS, Fla. – Gov. Jeb Bush, accompanied by former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani, won the endorsement of the state firefighters' union Monday.
The Florida Professional Firefighters, at its 58th annual convention, backed Bush for the first endorsement announcement of his gubernatorial campaign. The FPF represents 16,500 members from more than 150 departments around the state.
Bush is running for a second four-year term. If he defeats his Democratic opponent in November, he would be the first Republican to hold the state's top office for consecutive terms.
At the event, the firefighters' union credited Bush for improving retirement, disability and worker's compensation benefits.
Giuliani's presence was an added bonus for Bush. Giuliani is one of the country's most popular politicians, as Americans took solace in his steady leadership after the Sept. 11 terror attacks.
He is constantly in demand by Republican candidates across the nation. Since being forced out of office by term limits, Giuliani has stumped for New York Governor George Pataki, California gubernatorial candidate Bill Simon, Pennsylvania gubernatorial candidate Mike Fisher and Nevada congressional candidate Jon Porter.
Earlier Monday, Bush and Giuliani appeared at a private $1,000-a-plate fund-raiser, which added about $150,000 to the governor's campaign war chest.