In a crowded Democratic field for 2020, Pete Buttigieg has emerged as a surprisingly popular candidate over the last month. Ever since the South Bend mayor hosted his first town hall with CNN in early March, Buttigieg has received some positive press for his grasp on policy matters as well as his views on the overall political climate in America.
One other reason for Buttigieg gaining popularity in polls is also down to his unabashed takedown of the current administration, and on Thursday, the Afghanistan-returned veteran, who is also one of the youngest people to have become a mayor, laid into Trump for making what he called “false promises” to the American people, reports The Huffington Post.
Speaking about the “Make America Great Again” slogan that has become a hallmark of the Trump wave at a Commonwealth Club of California event in San Francisco, Buttigieg said that the slogan itself lacks honesty.
“It means ‘we’re going to stop the changes so you don’t have to change anything’ and it’s not honest. You can’t have an honest politics that revolves around the word ‘again.'”
Buttigieg had earlier claimed that a lot of anger of Trump supporters derived from of a flailing economy failing to generate jobs. He bemoaned “automation” as one of the primary reasons for Americans becoming unemployed. He said the loss of identity that people are feeling at this moment would only get “more urgent as automation changes the way we relate to the world.”
"Labeling Buttigieg as a moderate (in an ideological sense) is overly simplistic and inaccurate. Buttigieg says he wants to abolish the Electoral College and pack the Supreme Court. These progressive stances are a big part of his early buzz." https://t.co/2rZ4oh9ZxT
— The Daily Beast (@thedailybeast) March 30, 2019
Buttigieg said that Trump was able to manipulate the disaffection felt by Americans because of increasing automation. He argued that Trump made a “false promise” to workers whose livelihoods are being affected by automation.
“If we’re not speaking to that then I think we’re going to continue to see this kind of disaffection that has made people so ripe for the false promise being peddled by this White House that the solution is just to turn back the clock,” Buttigieg said.
The false promise being peddled by this White House that the solution to our problems is just to turn back the clock — to "Make America Great Again" — is not honest.
You can’t have an honest politics that revolves around the word “again.” pic.twitter.com/vsRgKzOuPm
— Pete Buttigieg (@PeteButtigieg) March 29, 2019
The early promise being shown by Buttigieg, who has also not shied away from speaking about his struggles of coming out as a gay man in Indiana, could be detrimental not only to the Trump administration but also to the crowded Democratic field hoping to unseat Trump in 2020. There is little doubt that his rising popularity and increasing campaign donations won’t guarantee him a successful campaign, but Buttigieg is already showing signs of having a way to connect with voters.