Democrat Wayne Messam announces 2020 presidential bid

Wayne Messam, the Democratic mayor of Miramar, Fla., on Thursday launched his bid for the presidency in 2020.

“America belongs to all of us. The promise of America belongs to all of us. That’s why I’m going to be running for president. To be your champion,” Messam says in a video announcing his candidacy.


Messam, who launched an exploratory committee for president earlier this month, also criticizes what he sees as a “broken” system, pointing to health care costs, climate change and student loan debt.

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“The problem in America as I see it is that we are not addressing these high-stakes problems that we must deal with today. When you have a senior citizen who can’t afford her prescription medicine, Washington is broken,” he says in the video.

“When our scientists are telling us if we don’t make drastic changes today, the quality of our air will be in peril, Washington is broken,” he continues. “Everyday people are graduating from universities with crippling debt, stifling their opportunity for financial mobility. That is what’s broken with this country.”

Messam is jumping into a crowded primary field that already includes one other current mayor, Pete ButtigiegPete ButtigiegScaled-back Pride Month poses challenges for fundraising, outreach Biden hopes to pick VP by Aug. 1 It’s as if a Trump operative infiltrated the Democratic primary process MORE, the mayor of South Bend, Ind. The field also includes two ex-mayors in Sen. Cory BookerCory Anthony BookerRand Paul introduces bill to end no-knock warrants Black lawmakers unveil bill to remove Confederate statues from Capitol Harris grapples with defund the police movement amid veep talk MORE (D-N.J.), the former mayor of Newark, N.J., and former San Antonio Mayor Julián Castro.

In an interview Thursday on CNN, Messam said “mayors get the job done” and that he’s “not convinced that the solutions are coming from Washington.”

“And that’s why I think the polls are showing that the American people are looking for someone who has actually done the work and are closest to the people and can beat Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpSenate advances public lands bill in late-night vote Warren, Democrats urge Trump to back down from veto threat over changing Confederate-named bases Esper orders ‘After Action Review’ of National Guard’s role in protests MORE,” he added. 

Messam notes in the video released Thursday that his parents came to the U.S. from Jamaica and that he started a construction business in Florida with his wife. He’s also the first African-American mayor of Miramar. 

“I’m passionate about the American dream because it’s not a fictitious thing for me,” he says. “It’s real for me.”

Updated at 10 a.m.

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