Francis Suarez, the mayor of Miami who is considering a potential run for president, attended a First in the Nation Town Hall Meeting at NEC Tuesday. This was his first visit to New Hampshire, a state known for its pivotal role in presidential primaries.
Suarez opened his speech by discussing his background and career. His parents were Cuban exiles, and he is married with two children. He was elected Mayor in Miami in 2017.
“I feel a tremendous sense of obligation to give back,” Suarez said.
Throughout his speech, Suarez highlighted his accomplishments as the Mayor of Miami. He spoke about the city’s successful economic growth since he took office. He also talked about his efforts to make Miami a more innovative and tech-friendly city, which he believes is crucial for the United States to remain competitive in the global economy.
Miami took a “holistic” approach to deal with crime, which led to Miami’s lowest homicide rate per capita since 1964, he said.
Lily Geber, a senior at New England College and reporter for the NewEnglander, asked Suarez about his stance on transgender athletes.
“Women should play women’s sports, and men should play men’s sports,” he said.
He added that the transgender conversation is distracting from real global problems.
Suarez stressed the importance of generational leadership. He noted that while the baby boomer generation had many accomplishments, it was time for the next generation to step up and take the reins. Suarez sees himself as part of that next generation, with a young perspective and a willingness to take action. He believes that the United States needs leaders who are not tied down to the status quo and who are willing to take on tough challenges.
“The kryptonite to democracy is division,” he said.
When asked about New Hampshire’s tradition of holding the first primary, he said he doesn’t see a need to make a change.
“Americans should feel good that this presidential process begins here,” he said.
The next speaker attending NEC’s First in the Nation Town Hall Series is Gov. Chris Christie. The event is open to the public and begins at 7 p.m. on Thursday, April 20, in the Simon Center Great Room.