Wayne Messam, a mayor in Florida, joins the 2020 Democratic race as a big-time underdog

YouTubeWayne Messam, mayor of Miramar, Florida, is running for president in 2020.
  • Wayne Messam, the mayor of Miramar, Florida, is running for president 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 said in his 2020 video.
  • Messam is a longshot candidate, but not the only currently-serving mayor running. Pete Buttigieg, the mayor of South Bend, Indiana, is also in the race.

Wayne Messam, the mayor of Miramar, Florida, on Thursday joined an already crowded field of Democratic candidates.

Messam, 44, is not the first currently-serving mayor to hop in the race – he’s joining Pete Buttigieg, the mayor of South Bend, Indiana, as yet another underdog candidate. Messam is the first black mayor of Miramar, a city of roughly 140,000 people.

He announced his 2020 candidacy in a video in which he is literally running, perhaps as a metaphor of sorts.


Read more:
Americans’ ideal presidential candidate is a lot younger than Bernie Sanders, Joe Biden, or Trump

In the video, Messam spoke of his Jamaican immigrant parents and their efforts to give him a better life, which saw him play on the national championship winning Florida State University football team in 1993.

Messam also spoke about his rise to politics, referencing a construction company he ran with his wife before going on to become mayor of Miramar.

He went on to describe the issues he thinks the country is facing, declaring, “Washington is broken.”


Read more:
Stacey Abrams pushes back on rumours about hopping on a 2020 ticket with Joe Biden: ‘I think you don’t run for second place’

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

Messam said when “everyday people” are graduating from college and universities with “crippling debt … that is what’s broken with this country.”

He went on to say, “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.”

Though Messam is a longshot candidate, he could be encouraged by the massive amount of media attention Buttigieg has received in recent weeks.

In an interview with CNN’s “New Day” on Thursday, Messam said, “I’m the son of immigrants. My father came to this country from Jamaica…chasing the American dream, and I’m living that American dream. But I see that American dream slipping away for a lot of Americans.”

Business Insider Emails & Alerts

Site highlights each day to your inbox.

Follow Business Insider Australia on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram.