Big names in tech including Peter Thiel and Keith Rabois have moved to Miami in the past year. Mayor Francis Suarez is welcoming them with open arms in his zeal to transform Miami into the next tech hub. The sell? Sunshine, low taxes and a mayor who is always willing to take their calls (or, as Kara Swisher puts it, “pet them.”)
In this conversation, Swisher presses Suarez on whether Miami — a city with rising sea levels and without an institution like Stanford in its back yard — can really become the next Silicon Valley. She also asks what he’s angling for in the long term. Suarez, a Republican, attracted national attention during the pandemic for his tensions with Florida’s governor, Ron DeSantis, and President Donald Trump.
He’s now rumored to be a contender to be Nikki Haley’s running mate in the 2024 presidential race — speculation that he also welcomes with open arms. “I certainly was not shy about wanting to build a bond and a relationship with her,” he says. So, does Suarez want to be on a Republican ticket? His answer: “I wouldn’t say no.”
Thoughts? Email us at [email protected]. Transcripts of each episode are available midday.
Special thanks to Shannon Busta, Liriel Higa, Michelle Harris and Isvett Verde.
“Sway” is produced by Nayeema Raza, Blakeney Schick, Heba Elorbany, Matt Kwong and Daphne Chen, and edited by Nayeema Raza and Paula Szuchman; fact-checking by Kate Sinclair; music and sound design by Isaac Jones; mixing by Erick Gomez.