A mayor of a small Florida town has formed an exploratory committee for a potential run for president.
Miramar Mayor Wayne Messam (D) announced the formation of the committee on Wednesday, reports The Sun Sentinel.
He is expected to make a definitive decision about his potential candidacy by the end of the month. If he runs, Messam wants to tout his experiences as a self-made businessman and the son of Jamaican immigrants. He also wants to wipe out all student debt.
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“I am living the American dream that my parents came to this country to have, and one that is slipping away from average Americans,” he said. “We have to re-commit to making that reality achievable again.”
“The mayor firmly believes you cannot just move to debt free college when student loan debt is stifling the American dream today,” one of his aides told BuzzFeed News. “We’re declaring it as an issue that threatens the economic security of this country. We don’t have to walk into another Great Recession.”
Messam believes eliminating the debt can level the playing field for all Americans.
“We must resolve the $1.5 trillion in student loan debt and give Americans a chance at the American Dream,” the aide added. “Americans struggling to make ends meet should be the priority.”
Despite being considered a longshot, Messam is looking ahead, and like current Democratic candidate Pete Buttigieg, claims his experience as a mayor would be an asset in the White House.
“We think we bring a unique perspective as a mayor of a major city in a state like Florida that is going to be pivotal in the Democratic primaries,” Messam said, according to The Miami Herald.
Beyond his plan for complete student loan forgiveness, Messam holds several positions that are popular among Democratic voters. He’s challenged legislation backed by the controversial National Rifle Association, has worked to make Miramar a safe zone for undocumented immigrants and wants to intensify the fight against climate change.
If he does decide to go for the presidency, he said he's planning on putting his all into it.
“I’m running to win,” he declared.
Messam was recently re-elected mayor with a whopping 86 percent of the vote, but he might have to step down if he runs for president due to Florida’s resign to run law. He contacted the Florida Division of Elections about the matter last month but has not yet received an answer.
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