Ok, that does it. I’m done with Pete Buttigieg

I have been increasingly disillusioned with the candidacy of Pete Buttigieg who is revealing himself to be yet another standard-issue Democratic party establishment candidate, seeking money from big financial interests and sniping at the progressive policies of people like Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren in favor of the ‘middle ground’ that is so favored by the oligarchy. He is increasingly becoming a smug defender of the status quo. But it was his statements about Chelsea Manning and Edward Snowden that drove me over the edge. These comments were made back in March but I was not aware of them until yesterday.

South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg, who launched a an exploratory committee in January to run for president in 2020 as a progressive Democrat, is criticizing former Army intelligence analyst Chelsea Manning and former NSA contractor Edward Snowden for disclosing classified information.

Buttigieg told CBS News Radio on the sidelines of the South by Southwest Festival where he spoke over the weekend that he was “troubled” by former President Obama’s decision to commute the 35-year prison sentence for Chelsea Manning days before he left office in 2017.

Manning was treated appallingly and tortured by the US government for her courageous act of exposing US military abuses. The clemency given by president Obama only partly made up for the cruel way that Obama’s s justice department had prosecuted Manning earlier. But what ‘troubles’ Buttigieg is not the torture that Manning was subjected to but the clemency shown at the end of Obama’s term?

As for Edward Snowden, he too was a courageous young person who risked a lot to make people aware of the abuses that the US government and its allies were committing all over the world. He has to be in exile in Russia because if the returned to the US, he would be charged under the Espionage Act that would strip him of pretty much all legal rights that we take for granted.

The attitude of someone towards people like Manning, Snowden, and all the other courageous whistleblowers is a litmus test of where they stand on civil liberties and human rights. Anyone who takes the stance that Buttigieg did is someone who is subservient to the national security state.

Alexis Grenell writes that at the last debate, one of the moderators Andrea Mitchell pointed out what to Grenell was an obvious double standard by which it does not take much to be considered a serious contender if you are a man.

At the first Democratic Debate free of male moderators, Andrea Mitchell opened up by calling bullshit on Pete Buttigieg: “You were elected mayor in a Democratic city receiving just under 11,000 votes and in your only statewide race you lost by 25 points. Why should Democrats take the risk of betting on you?”

It was a particularly sweet moment to see a 73-year-old woman pointing out the sexist double standard Pete’s been riding. Voters judge men on potential regardless of their puny qualifications. Women have to have qualifications, and receipts.


  1. says

    Women have to have qualifications, and receipts.

    And that’s still often not enough! This probably won’t be a surprise, but the Bernie Bros have been vile towards Warren much like they were towards Clinton! They try to hide behind the excuse that Warren’s not as progressive as Bernie as to why they are not supportive. And while it is certainly true that she is not, it does not explain the hostility.

    As a recent example, I saw a number of Bernie Bros suggest she’s just like Buttigieg when she announced her transition plan to get to M4A. They suggested, too, that her plan was now the Buttigieg plan and how this is evidence of how dishonest and conniving she supposedly is. That claim is absurd for anyone who’s looked at Buttigieg’s so-called “plan.” His is to just tinker around the edges of the status quo and have that be the plan for 10 years (and has no reasonable plan to pay for the tinkering). After which, it seems it would be have to up to the administration at that time to actually figure out how to complete a transition. His plan is a joke and so asserting that Warren’s plan is equivalent is absurd. It would be one thing for people to have disagreements with the plan or not like the plan, but the hostility of making false equivalencies seems best explained by sexism, pure and simple.

    Sorry that’s slightly off topic, but I’m done with sexism in this country. It’s a damn shame so many self-proclaimed progressives engage in it. 🙁

  2. brucegee1962 says

    I don’t care about his policies. I’m not going to even consider him until he actually has some experience with government. We’ve seen what happens when a neophyte with no government experience somehow lands in the top job, and it isn’t pretty. There’s no reason to think this guy (or Yang, for that matter) would be able to handle it any better. There’s a bit more to the job than being able to string words together into a nice speech.
    Can you imagine the mayor of the 29 largest city in the US sitting down across from Putin or Xi?
    None of them are really thrilling me right now, but the women clearly seem the best qualified.

  3. Holms says

    And that’s still often not enough! This probably won’t be a surprise, but the Bernie Bros have been vile towards Warren much like they were towards Clinton!

    That’s odd, Bernie supporters generally view Warren as the next best candidate. I can understand not supporting her, but what things have the said about her that are fairly described as ‘vile’? What you described seems underwhelming.

  4. ColeYote says

    At this point Buttigieg is pretty much just Biden with less baggage.

    #2: Yeah, the fact that Berniebros took “Elizabeth Warren explains plan to introduce public option in her first year and transition to single-payer two years later” and turned it into “Elizabeth Warren abandons Medicare for All” is… not great. And I apparently follow a lot of Berniebros on Twitter, so I’ve kinda been getting bombarded with that. Much as I might agree with most of Bernie Sanders’ ideas, his supporters are really doing a great job reminding me why I hate populism.

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