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Incumbent Suarez Defeats Ferre in Runoff for Mayor of Miami

November 11, 1987|From Times Wire Services

MIAMI — Mayor Xavier Suarez won a convincing victory Tuesday over Maurice Ferre, the man he unseated two years ago, and said his reelection in the hotly contested runoff was a "mandate for serenity."

With all 86 precincts and absentee ballots counted, Suarez had 29,826 votes, or 62.1%, and Ferre had 18,173, or 37.9%.

"I think we have a mandate for serenity in city affairs," said Suarez, 38, a Harvard-educated lawyer.

'Have Come Together'

"The white Americans, black Americans and Hispanic Americans have come together and said this is the kind of government we want--the kind of government progressive cities all over the country are getting."

As a crowd of supporters chanted "Viva Ferre," the former mayor made his concession speech, saying the loss "was not as painful as two years ago because this was a campaign in which not one negative incident occurred. There was not one dirty trick."

Ferre said he sought the office "with a great sense of dedication and love for the city of Miami."

Miami's black community, which voted 80% for black attorney Arthur Teele Jr. in the Nov. 3 general election, this time appeared to have swung its support to the Cuban-born Suarez over Ferre, a Puerto Rico native.

Suarez took 63% of the vote in 26 predominantly black precincts, unofficial returns showed. He also overwhelmingly carried the Latino and non-Latino white precincts.

"This is a triple majority, just what Miami needs to unite," Suarez said at his raucous campaign headquarters.

In Miami's form of government, the mayor has only a single vote on the five-member City Commission. A city manager tends to day-to-day operations. The mayor is paid $5,000 a year.

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