Pete Buttigieg’s campaign has just announced impressive fundraising results. Sam Finkelstein has taken a close look at the people who have endorsed, funded, and supported Buttigieg’s presidential candidacy and does not like what he finds.
Two questions continue to loom large over the 2020 Democratic primary field: Who is Pete Buttigieg? And what is he doing there?
Seemingly overnight, the once obscure mayor of Indiana’s fourth-largest city was vaulted to national prominence, pockets stuffed with big checks from billionaire benefactors.
The publication of a list of 218 endorsements from “foreign policy and national security professionals” by Buttigieg’s campaign deepened the mystery.
Some observers have raised questions about Pete Buttigieg’s intimate relationship with the national security state, after it was revealed that his campaign had paid nearly $600,000 for “security” to a Blackwater-style military contractor.
Buttigieg’s lack of core principles are what might make him so attractive to military contractors and financial institutions, two of the status quo’s biggest beneficiaries.
Mayor Pete has effectively positioned himself as a Trojan Horse for the establishment, offering “generational change” that doesn’t challenge existing power structures in any concrete way.
Buttigieg’s lengthy roster of endorsements is loaded with former intelligence operatives, national security hardliners, regime-change specialists, and vulture capitalists.
Yet some of Mayor Pete’s most troubling endorsements come from outside of the military-intelligence apparatus.
Obscure presidential candidates don’t typically garner hundreds of elite national security endorsements before a single vote is cast. So what do these spooks and vulture capitalists see in Mayor Pete?
Perhaps the most reasonable conclusion is that they see Buttigieg as an empty vessel. Opportunistic and unmoored by ideology or political goals beyond his advancing his career, Buttigieg is the ideal candidate for those who seek to maintain existing hierarchies.
As Marcus Ranum perceptively pointed out in a comment to an earlier post about Buttigieg, “He’s a big-money machine pol; they’re trying for Obama 2.0: a candidate that is just unusual enough that liberals make the mistake of assuming he’s one of them.”