Miami Mayor Francis Suarez suspends GOP’s 2024 presidential bid after failing to qualify for debate
Miami (AP) — Miami Mayor Francis Suarez on Tuesday suspended his position Candidacy for the presidencyand withdraw from the 2024 race after that failure to qualify for the first republican debate.
The two-term mayor became the first candidate to drop out of a crowded GOP field. He launched his campaign just over two months ago as one of the last challengers to join the primary race so far dominated by former President Donald Trump.
“Although I have decided to suspend my campaign for president, my commitment to making this nation better for every American remains,” he said in a statement.
He did not issue an endorsement, saying instead: “I look forward to staying connected with other Republican presidential candidates and doing everything I can to make sure our party puts forward a strong candidate who can inspire and unite the country, and renew the spirit of Americans.” Trust our institutions and each other, and they will win.”
And the 45-year-old Suarez was vying to become The first sitting mayor And first latino elected president.
Suarez, the son of the first Cuban-born mayor, spoke on the campaign trail of his role as the only Hispanic candidate in the race and his experience leading the world-famous city of Miami, home to about 450,000, as it battled crime and homelessness.
Suarez has made visits to states where the Republican Party voted early, and said he can help the party reach out more to Hispanics. He has made a strong effort to boost donor numbers to qualify for the debate by offering people a chance to get front-row tickets to see Argentine soccer legend Lionel Messi’s debut as an Inter Miami player and promising a $20 “Pedomix Relief Card” in 2018. Return in exchange for donations of $20 $1.
Suarez has been critical of Trump in the past and did not support him in the 2016 or 2020 presidential elections. But earlier this year, Kellyanne Conway, Trump’s former White House adviser, floated Suarez’s name as a potential vice presidential candidate. During his two-month campaign, Suarez largely avoided direct criticism of Trump when asked about the charges he faced, and said he would consider pardoning him.
Meanwhile, Suarez has emerged as a critic of another presidential candidate, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, dismissing some of the state immigration laws he signed as “headline-grabbing” and lacking in substance. He repeated Trump’s attacks, saying the governor does not make eye contact and has difficulty in personal relationships with other politicians.
The mayor faced questions about his work for a developer who was looking to obtain permits from the city after reports from the Miami Herald said the FBI was investigating those payments. The Miami-Dade County Ethics and Public Trust Commission is reviewing these allegations with state attorneys general.
The mayor fumbled when asked about it on a radio show Uighurs, a Muslim-majority group that China has been accused of persecuting, saying “What is a Uyghur?” He later said that he did not recognize the pronunciation.
and last week, Suarez told the Associated Press for which he was eligible discussion last weekalthough senior Republican National Committee advisers who spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity to participate in internal discussions said he did not meet the criteria.
Candidates must meet ballot and donor requirements set by the Republican National Committee: at least 1% in three high-quality national polls or a combination of national polls and early state polls and at least 40,000 donors with 200 in 20 states Or more.
This article originally appeared on apnews.com