The League of Conservation Voters is parting ways with a forum on climate change after its co-host, The New Republic, published an op-ed about Democratic presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg, which made homophobic and disparaging remarks about the Indiana mayor.
CNN is reporting that Gene Karpinski, LCV’s president, stated that the language and statements in the article from The New Republic “are inconsistent with our values.”
LCV is a prominent environmental group that was going to co-host the event, a 240-minute discussion about the issue for the current presidential candidates at a forum in September with The New Republic, but in light of the article, they are parting ways, says Karpinski.
“LCV is withdrawing our participation in the presidential primary candidate climate forum previously announced in New York City on September 23. We will remain focused on the important work of elevating the climate crisis in this election and encouraging all the candidates to be prioritizing solutions,” Karpinski said.
The questionable op-ed piece, called “My Mayor Pete Problem,” was written by Dale Peck, an author and literary critic, who also happens to be gay. In the editorial, Peck calls the mayor “Mary Pete” throughout the article, adding that Buttigieg shouldn’t be in the White House due to sexual promiscuity, as he couldn’t be trusted to focus on the job at hand.
The New Republic pulls incendiary Pete Buttigieg story https://t.co/h4plf7P278
— The Daily Beast (@thedailybeast) July 13, 2019
NBC News called the piece “vulgar and homophobic,” and expressed alarm that Peck called Buttigieg “the gay equivalent of Uncle Tom.” Peck’s argument was that because the mayor waited until he was in his 30s to come out as gay, he would be too preoccupied with “sex and drugs to be an effective president.”
On social media, even people who thought that they could not be shocked by homophobic comments expressed alarm that The National Republic published an article with such poorly informed sentiments.
Parker Malloy of Media Matters expressed shock that such an odd piece went public.
“Holy crap, that TNR piece about Buttigieg is… rambling, gross, and bizarre. I don’t understand the purpose of it?” Malloy said.
Hours after the article was posted on Friday on The New Republic website, editor Chris Lehmann took it down and replaced it with a note of apology, saying that he was sorry that it was published and regretted it.
“Dale Peck’s post ‘My Mayor Pete Problem’ has been removed from the site, in response to criticism of the piece’s inappropriate and invasive content. We regret its publication,” Lehmann said.