Buttigieg Raised $24.8 Million

Mayor Pete is raking in the dough.

Quite a number of outlets are making a big deal about the fundraising total of the mayor of South Bend, Indiana of whom most of us had not heard until quite recently. Among those not paywalled, the Washington Post:

South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete Buttigieg raised nearly $25 million during the past three months for his White House bid, his campaign said Monday, posting a figure expected to eclipse those of most of his Democratic rivals and bolster his standing in the crowded field.

The $24.8 million haul announced by Buttigieg’s campaign far exceeds the $7.1 million he raised during the first quarter of the year, an amount that helped catapult him from a little-known mayor of a modest-sized city to a serious presidential contender.

Candidates have until July 15 to file fundraising reports with the Federal Election Commission, but those with impressive numbers typically share their totals soon after a quarter ends. Sunday was the final day of the second quarter.

—“Buttigieg raised $24.8 million for his White House bid during the past three months, his campaign says”

So, $25 million is quite a lot of money. But, absent context, it’s also rather meaningless.

The story doesn’t say how much other candidates have raised this quarter, aside from observing,

Former vice president Joe Biden, who has been leading in early polling among the Democratic field, is also likely to post a large number.

Two weeks ago, he told supporters at a Manhattan fundraiser that his campaign so far had raised money from 360,000 donors, with an average contribution of $55. That works out to $19.8 million.

Biden entered the campaign April 25, past the first campaign fundraising disclosure deadline and later than many rivals.

During the first quarter, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), post the highest total. He reported taking in $18.2 million from about 500,000 donors. Sanders also reported an additional $2.5 million in transfers from previous campaigns.

But, again, we don’t know what the rest of the field did this quarter.

Moreover, as Donald Trump demonstrated in 2016, it may well be that fundraising is much less important than it used to be. There are so many ways other than paying for television commercials to reach prospective voters these days.

The subtext of these stories seems to be that, whoa, Buttigieg must be for real. And I think that’s probably right.

I was exceedingly skeptical when he first threw his hat into the ring because 1) I’d literally never heard of him before; 2) before Trump, we’ve never elected someone President with small-town mayor as his highest leadership position; 3) we’ve never elected someone in their 30s; and 4) I’m skeptical that a proudly open gay man can win 270 Electoral votes.

While I still think those are formidable obstacles, he has indeed been impressive in the early going. The electorate may indeed be ready for a reboot and tired of people in their 70s running the show. Whether they’re willing to go all the way to a relative kid, I can’t say, but he seems likely to hang around awhile.

FILED UNDER: Campaign 2020, Pete Buttigieg, US Politics
James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is a Security Studies professor at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.

Comments

  1. Neil Hudelson says:

    Even more impressive: his finance chair is all of 18 months out of college. She was a tenant in one of my rental properties, and asked me my advice before jumping on the campaign. I told her “the worst that happens is he fails. No one is going to blame you for not raising tens of millions for a small town mayor from Indiana. And the best thing that could happen is he catches fire and your career is set for life.”

    So, her career is set for life.

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  2. Daryl and his brother Darryl says:

    I’m skeptical that a proudly open gay man can win 270 Electoral votes.

    How about a black woman, and an open gay man as VP?
    The racist, misogynistic, and homophobic right would lose it’s collective mind.

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  3. James Joyner says:

    @Daryl and his brother Darryl:

    How about a black woman, and an open gay man as VP? The racist, misogynistic, and homophobic right would lose it’s collective mind.

    It might well help energize the base but I do think it would be harder to get crossovers in rural America.

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  4. Michael says:

    Not for nothing, but what happens to all that money if he drops out in 6 months?

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  5. MarkedMan says:

    @James Joyner:

    I do think it would be harder to get crossovers in rural America.

    I hear you, but on the other hand I’ve always been stunned at just how many absolute racists voted for Obama. Part of it may be the vanishingly small number of people who are aware of and accept their own racism. Instead they may have viewed Obama as “one of the good ones”.

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  6. Daryl and his brother Darryl says:

    @James Joyner:

    it would be harder to get crossovers

    No doubt. I think we can all see clearly, now, the bigotry that remains in this country. If Dennison has done anything positive, it is exposing the rancid underbelly of hatred that still exists on the right.

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  7. Scott F. says:

    @James Joyner: I’m sure you are right that it will be harder to get crossover rural voters. Also, I recognize you are still getting up to speed on Buttigieg.

    But, Mayor Pete, after he came out while mayor of South Bend, a small city in the Heartland and home of the major Catholic university, was re-elected with 80% of the vote. Set aside the unreachable bigots and you’ll find a lot of crossover rural voters who will choose someone who can deliver results over someone who is only selling hatred of the Other.

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  8. Jen says:

    I’m not so sure about the assumption that he can’t get votes as a gay man.

    If we look at the numbers of those who accept same sex marriage, we’re well over 60%. The people who are demonstrably anti-gay aren’t crossover voters anyway, they’ll be voting for Trump.

    American attitudes have shifted massively. I don’t know if that translates over to leadership for the country, but there are enough high-profile business leaders and celebrities who are gay that for most, it just isn’t a thing they think about.

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  9. Jay L Gischer says:

    I think there aren’t that many of the true rural voters because they are, well, rural. How many people actually live in Western Kansas, for instance? It’s more about suburban and exurban voters. I think they are less insular than they have ever been, because of the internet.

    Furthermore, a gay guy who is married to a down-to-earth likable spouse in a long-term commitment seems very tame compared to the trans bogey(wo)man they shop around in their scare tactics. He obviously isn’t the sort of guy who hops bathhouses and parades around the Castro wearing nothing but chaps.

    So maybe it doesn’t matter all that much, and maybe the country wants someone who’s younger and plays the anger/hate card less.

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  10. Scott F. says:

    @Jen:

    American attitudes have shifted massively.

    I actually think attitudes have shifted more when it comes to otherwise mainstream gay men than they have toward otherwise mainstream, yet strong, forceful women.

    That’s too bad, since what we could really use is strong, forceful women and more of them.

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  11. Teve says:

    I don’t know if anybody else on this website is into clothes, but am I the only person who has noticed that mayor Pete’s dress shirts fit him better than any other politician I’ve ever seen?

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  12. Jen says:

    @Scott F.: Oh, absolutely. And I think it’s actually fed a bit into Buttigieg’s relative success thus far. I can’t remember where I read it, but basically there’s a bit of a fatalistic attitude among white women voters, age 40+ that boiled down to if someone with Hillary’s resume can’t get elected, there’s more of an uphill battle than was expected.

    Honestly, it’s on pretty obvious display. The “well, I’d vote for a woman but not Hillary” has rather seamlessly transitioned to “Harris is mean and went too far attacking Joe,” or “Warren is smart but has a schoolmarm vibe,” or “Gillibrand is trying too hard,” etc. It’s an unconscious form of misogynistic bias that frightens me a bit, because it comes from women as well as men. I’d LOVE to be proven wrong, but I worry that as a nation, we’re still 10+ years away from electing a woman to the top office.

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  13. Jay L Gischer says:

    @Jen: I suspect that, like Britain, the first woman to be our national leader will be conservative. It’s just less scary that way, I think.

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  14. Daryl and his brother Darryl says:

    @Jen:

    I worry that as a nation, we’re still 10+ years away from electing a woman to the top office.

    Um…we already elected a woman to our top office…but for a fluke of the system that remains from a time when many states didn’t even hold popular elections for president.
    The following are tweets from Trump when, for a while, it looked like Obama might end up with fewer popular votes than Romney (of course – it didn’t end that way):

    Trump called the Electoral College “a disaster for a democracy … a total sham and a travesty.”

    One read: “We should have a revolution in this country!”

    Another said: “More votes equals a loss…revolution!”

    This country elected a woman (that no one really likes). We can do it again.

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  15. An Interested Party says:

    I suspect that, like Britain, the first woman to be our national leader will be conservative. It’s just less scary that way, I think.

    I recall a similar argument being made about the first black president, but, obviously, Obama proved that argument to be wrong…

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  16. Terrye Cravens says:

    I am glad to hear this…and he did it without any grandstanding backstabbing demagoguery. That is even better.

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  17. Teve says:

    Um…we already elected a woman to our top office…but for a fluke of the system that remains from a time when many states didn’t even hold popular elections for president.

    Democrats can’t just win the popular vote, they have to cover the Dumbass Spread.

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  18. Jen says:

    @Daryl and his brother Darryl: Well, yes. She received the most votes. I should apparently have been more specific.

    “I worry that under the current system, which has no real chance of being substantially altered quickly and certainly not by the next election in 2020, this country is 10+ years from seeing a woman receive more than 270 electoral college votes.”

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  19. Monala says:

    @Jen: Yet many nations with their own extensive histories of misogyny have managed to elect women leaders. Why do you think we’re so backwards in this respect?

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  20. Jen says:

    @Monala: A genuinely good question.

    Some of it has to do with the presidential system that we have. A study in 2010 referenced in this piece from The Atlantic on this topic found that parliamentary systems are more likely to have women leaders because they “bypass” the voting public and that allows women to be selected by their legislative peers.

    That can’t all be it though. Some of it might have to do with our religious roots, I suppose. Other than that, I have no idea why a woman has led Pakistan, for example, and yet we can’t seem to successfully get to 271+ EC votes.

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  21. EddieInCA says:

    Mayor Pete should take his newfound riches and save them for his 2022 run for the Indiana Senate, which, if he doesn’t faceplant too badly this time around, will be his for the taking in 2022.

    I’m a huge fan of Mayor Pete. I was going to go to a fundraiser for him here in LA on June 19th. Unfortunately, he had to reschedule due to the police drama in South Bend.

    But…. anyone who thinks an openly gay man, or a black woman will be able to get to 270 in this climate is living in a bubble. I hate to write it and think it, but it’s the reality I see. I’ve spent too much time in Georgia, Texas, Florida, and Pennsylvania to believe that there is a significant amount of Trump voters that are going to vote for a black women or a gay man at the top of the ticket.

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  22. Andy says:

    @James Joyner:

    It might well help energize the base but I do think it would be harder to get crossovers in rural America.

    I think it depends on how he addresses his identity. I think one of the reasons Pres. Obama was so successful is that he didn’t make his race a central issue to his candidacy (unlike Clinton did with her gender). In my home state of Colorado, Jared Polis got elected easily by focusing on the issues and not wearing his gay, Jewish identity on his shoulder.

    Outside of a minority of the usual suspects, I don’t think most Americans will care that Buttigieg is gay.

    Right now I don’t know enough about him, but at this point, he’s probably second on my list behind Hickenlooper. I wish he had more experience at the national level, but that may be an advantage with an electorate that seems increasingly hostile to insiders.

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  23. EddieInCA says:

    @Andy:

    Right now I don’t know enough about him, but at this point, he’s probably second on my list behind Hickenlooper.

    That explains your position espoused in the other thread perfectly. Hickenlooper. Enough said.

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  24. Andy says:

    @EddieInCA:

    That explains your position espoused in the other thread perfectly. Hickenlooper. Enough said.

    You’ll have to explain what that (presumed) ad hominem means.

    Hickenlooper was the very popular and effective governor of my home state. One of the reasons I currently favor him is his track record here in Colorado and I currently know him better than any other candidate besides Biden and Sanders. He pragmatic view of politics that is mostly absent from modern national politics, which means he is unlikely to get the nomination.

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  25. EddieInCA says:

    @Andy:

    You’ll have to explain what that (presumed) ad hominem means.

    He pragmatic view of politics that is mostly absent from modern national politics, which means he is unlikely to get the nomination.

    You explained it yourself with the second blockquote above. By your own words, you’re supporting someone who’s views are outside modern national politics and unlikely to get the nomination. My only quibble is with your phrase “which means he is unlikely to get the nomination”. I would replace it with “which means he has absolutely zero chance of getting the nomination.”

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  26. Andy says:

    @EddieInCA:

    Yes, I’ve always been realistic about his chances. That is different from believing he’d make a decent President. But his biggest hurdle isn’t the national electorate – I think he’d do rather well in a national election actually – it’s winning the Democratic ticket. He is too far outside the mainstream of the Democratic primary cohort.

    But, I don’t feel confident in any predictions. If 2016 taught us anything it’s that conventional views of who will win the nomination and election should be treated skeptically, especially this far out.

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  27. Gustopher says:

    @EddieInCA:

    But…. anyone who thinks an openly gay man, or a black woman will be able to get to 270 in this climate is living in a bubble. I hate to write it and think it, but it’s the reality I see. I’ve spent too much time in Georgia, Texas, Florida, and Pennsylvania to believe that there is a significant amount of Trump voters that are going to vote for a black women or a gay man at the top of the ticket.

    We don’t need a significant number, we need about 60,000 in a variety of specific states.

    I’m not going to attempt to guess how people will react to woman or a gay man, as it always depends on which woman or gay man. Buttigieg is really likable when not talking about generational change, and may be able to win people over, by being one of the “good gays”.

    @Jay L Gischer:

    Furthermore, a gay guy who is married to a down-to-earth likable spouse in a long-term commitment seems very tame compared to the trans bogey(wo)man they shop around in their scare tactics. He obviously isn’t the sort of guy who hops bathhouses and parades around the Castro wearing nothing but chaps.

    But what about Chasten?

    Something that has me nervous about Buttigieg is how carefully packaged he is — from the perfectly fit shirts to the precise way he checks off every NPR liberal demographic. It makes me suspicious that there is something this “too good to be true” image is hiding.

    He also only came out in his thirties, so about three years ago. Chasten is basically his first significant relationship. I don’t know how well Buttigieg knows himself.

    I want some sleazy reporters digging through his and Chasten’s pasts, turning over every stone, and revealing whatever can be found, long before he becomes the nominee.

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  28. Jen says:

    @Gustopher: Any decent professionally run campaign conducts opposition research on themselves, and I have no doubt that the very digging you wish for is being done.

    It’s an unattractive but essential part of campaign work.

    It should also go without saying that one should not outsource such research to a foreign actor, nor accept it from a foreign actor if offered.

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  29. EddieInCA says:

    @Gustopher:

    We don’t need a significant number, we need about 60,000 in a variety of specific states.

    No. No. No. You’re making the mistake that this will be a rerun of 2016. There are voters who didn’t vote for Trump in 2016 who will vote for him this time due to their tax cuts, and his judge choices. There are other voters who voted for him, who are disgusted with him, but who will still vote for him because of…. taxes and judges and abortion. There are other voters who didn’t vote for him and won’t vote for him again.

    Assuming that all that is needed is 70K votes in three states is taking a very, very big risk. 2020 will play out differently.

    Don’t fight the last battle. Be prepared for the next one.

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  30. Scott F. says:

    @EddieInCA:

    But…. anyone who thinks an openly gay man, or a black woman will be able to get to 270 in this climate is living in a bubble.

    So, I guess I live firmly in that bubble. I don’t deny the reality of your experiences in these battleground states, but I guess it comes down to how one chooses to deal with that reality.

    If ever there was a fight worth having as a Democrat in the US in the era of Trump, isn’t this the fight to have? Retreating to a “safe” white male moderate as the Democratic candidate against the Misogynist in Chief would pretty much concede that @Jen’s 10+ years before a woman POTUS becomes 20+ years. It would also perpetuate the misguided conventional wisdom that what passes for “radical” in today’s political climate is leftward policy proposals for tomorrow instead of the actual theocratic authoritarianism enacted on us by the right today.

    Trump proved that the unsafe choice in major party candidate doesn’t automatically translate to the unelectable choice. Trump is an aberration and uniquely unpopular in a robust economy. The old rules should not apply. This is the time for this fight.

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  31. EddieInCA says:

    @Scott F.:

    Trump proved that the unsafe choice in major party candidate doesn’t automatically translate to the unelectable choice. Trump is an aberration and uniquely unpopular in a robust economy. The old rules should not apply. This is the time for this fight.

    If this was 2016, I’d agree with you. But you’re dealing with the power of incumbency. A sheer number of people are going to vote for him just because he’s the current president and they don’t see anything wrong with what’s happened the last four years.

    Mayor Pete and Kamala are amazing. But let me ask you a question. If you took away the twitter noise of those of us on the coasts, what would make a Democrat in Pennsylvania or Wisconsin who voted for Trump change their vote? Because, at the end of the day, Kamala is going to be painted as an angry black woman, and Mayor Pete will be painted as a soft gay man. The ads write themselves. And a large part of the population will buy the caricatures created by Fox News, Breitbart, Drudge, National Review, RedState, Hot Air, Twitchy, the Gateway Pundit, and the rest of the wingnut welfare circuit.

    My two favorite candidates are Mayor Pete and Kamala, with Warren a close third. But I don’t see any of those three getting to 270 at the top of the ticket. 2016 results taught me that a large segment of Americans are racist, xenophobic assholes, and I don’t see that changing.

    But I’d LOVE to be wrong.

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  32. Scott F. says:

    @EddieInCA:
    I may be the wrong person to respond, because when you ask “What would make a Democrat in Pennsylvania or Wisconsin who voted for Trump change their vote?”, the first thing I come up with is “a compelling demonstration that Trump is a criminal and that he likely has dementia.” I personally am unable to fathom how any sentient being who has ever even leaned Democratic could vote for Trump over anyone the Democrats run (save Williamson).

    As you so eloquently express in the comment just above mine, I believe we should prepare for the next battle and not try to win where we lost in the last iteration. I’m less than convinced that winning the WH means winning back “Trump Democrats.” There is a wide swath of independents who took a chance on The Donald who know better now, plus a left-side base hungry to be activated. I’m old enough to know better when I say that I expect younger voters to make a difference, but I’m going to say it anyway, since I believe the Marjory Stoneman Douglas activists are smarter and more impassioned than their predecessors. I’m idealistic enough to believe that informed voters still outnumber misinformed voters in this country. Finally, I believe if I’m wrong about all these things, I’d rather know now that my country is lost than to defer that enlightenment with another play for the American middle that keeps inexorably shifting further and further right.

    My top three are your top three, but I (we) NEED for you to be wrong. My first choice is Kamala Harris because I believe if she ran against Trump she would “prosecute” him relentlessly. And though I believe she also brings a meaningful positive vision for change for the country, Trumpism and the GOP that has enabled it must be “indicted” for the country to begin to heal. (In this specific time, I believe this repudiation of the opposition may be more important for the country than policy. See the institutional constraints Steven L. Taylor has been posting about.)

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  33. Gustopher says:

    @Jen:

    Any decent professionally run campaign conducts opposition research on themselves, and I have no doubt that the very digging you wish for is being done.

    Remember John Edwards’ second family? People think things are much more secret than they are.

    Any whiff of promiscuity would play poorly, and bring up the worst stereotypes, behavior which in a straight man is manly.

    But it’s mostly the not coming out until a few years ago and then immediately falling in love with that one perfect guy that bothers me. If true, he either knows himself amazingly well (just to know what you want in a partner and recognize it when you see it is a huge learning experience for most people), or amazingly poorly. People who know themselves poorly tend to be very erratic when their conceptions about themselves get challenged. We already have an erratic president.

    That part of Buttigieg’s story feels so wrong that I half suspect that it just isn’t true, and that he has had discrete relationships in the past, with other men who are or were also closeted, and so he’s not mentioning them, ever.

    I also wonder about the logistics of being closeted until one’s 30s. Mayor Pete is a keeper — cute, smart, articulate, apparently kind… If you were friends with him, you would introduce him to your sister/friend/etc. Has he gone through college and a decade after carefully avoiding dates? Was it an open secret? Did his friends all think he was asexual?

    (I do have a weird mental picture of him explaining that “your sister seems nice, but when I said that I wanted to date either a concert pianist or an astronaut, I think I meant that I wanted to date someone who is a concert pianist and an astronaut. Also, fluent in Russian, but not a cosmonaut, because I’m interested in the military and I don’t want to mess up my security clearance.”)

    When Rachel Maddow asked about this, he said that it took a long time because he had to figure it out himself, and then he didn’t say anything because it would limit his career — politics and military being explicitly mentioned. Has he been planning a run for office since he was 19, or did he finally figure it out on his 35th birthday?

    It doesn’t add up. And that leaves me wary of him, despite him being pretty damn impressive.

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  34. Gustopher says:

    @Scott F.:

    I personally am unable to fathom how any sentient being who has ever even leaned Democratic could vote for Trump over anyone the Democrats run (save Williamson).

    Yang bothers me more than Williamson. Williamson seemed to know that she had no real business being on that stage.

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  35. Jen says:

    @Gustopher:

    Remember John Edwards’ second family?

    Fair point. My background (what feels like ages ago) was in Republican politics. Perhaps they are more thorough than Democrats.

    Yes, Buttigieg does feel like a deus ex machina candidate for NPR-listening Democrats like me.

    Biden makes me really, really nervous though. He’s been a gaffe machine for years, he’s old and appeared a bit doddering on stage.

    Every single time the Democrats put up the “safe” choice, they lose. When they go with the young nobody (from Arkansas/with the funny name), they win. This is because the youth vote is absolutely critical and totally unreliable, a really, really bad combination if you want to win.

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  36. EddieInCA says:

    Scott F. says:
    Monday, July 1, 2019 at 16:50

    @EddieInCA:
    I may be the wrong person to respond, because when you ask “What would make a Democrat in Pennsylvania or Wisconsin who voted for Trump change their vote?”, the first thing I come up with is “a compelling demonstration that Trump is a criminal and that he likely has dementia.” I personally am unable to fathom how any sentient being who has ever even leaned Democratic could vote for Trump over anyone the Democrats run (save Williamson).

    Yeah.. I agree with that. But 2016 showed us that they could, and they did. Trump is known. Anyone who cares knows he’s unfit. Yet. Yet. Yet. His supporters don’t care. And those unlike us, who don’t follow politics or policy, just look at the great economy and tax break and say “All is good. Let’s give the President another four years.”

    Look at this great tool at the Morning Consult site: https://morningconsult.com/tracking-trump/

    They have amazing data, but it might depress you. Trump is still, after all this BS, close to 270, based on Approval Ratings per state. And looking at that map, I don’t see how Harris or Mayor Pete, or Warren gets to 270. I can’t see it. But it’s early. Who else knows what will happen? If we go to war with Iran, I think Trump gets re-elected easily. But, again, I hope I’m really wrong.

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  37. Kylopod says:

    @Jen:

    The people who are demonstrably anti-gay aren’t crossover voters anyway, they’ll be voting for Trump.

    That’s reductive and simplistic. The Democratic coalition has long included a significant number of religiously conservative voters who stick with the party for other reasons. It’s particularly common among African Americans. There’s also a significant generational element to attitudes about LGBT; many older Democrats are more homophobic than many younger Republicans. According to 2012’s exit polls, 25% of voters who opposed SSM voted for Obama.

    The danger is not necessarily that homophobic Democrats will vote for Trump over Buttigieg. The danger is that they won’t show up to the polls.

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  38. Scott F. says:

    @Gustopher: I almost put Yang in those parentheses with Williamson, so I know what you mean. I’d still vote for Yang over Trump all the same.

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  39. Matt says:

    @EddieInCA:

    what would make a Democrat in Pennsylvania or Wisconsin who voted for Trump change their vote?

    If Trump’s own actions isn’t enough to get those people to change their vote then there’s probably nothing that would. Of the 15 people I know for sure voted for trump 11 of them are disgusted with his actions and will be voting against Trump in the next election. Now if we nominated Hillary again then several of them would just not vote in the Presidential race. The issue was Trump was an unknown and to the uneducated a self made billionaire who didn’t pander to the same special interest groups as standard politicians. Also Bill isn’t very well liked because NAFTA and the AWB but mostly because of NAFTA which devastated my home town. Hillary is seen as an extension of that and all the evil corruption in the federal government. Meanwhile Trump looked like an outsider immune to the racket who would come in shake up the place and hopefully make it better magically. Basically a mix of ignorance and hatred of Clinton caused most of them to vote for Trump. Of the four trumpsters left well they are just in a delusional world where they occasionally tell me about Alex Jones’ style conspiracy theories about some crazy stuff. One of them just wants the world to burn and thinks Trump can still pull it off. Those four aren’t going to change to vote democratic no matter what. The previous 11 though are very open to the idea but are probably threatened to some degree by a female candidate. The whole being gay thing doesn’t matter outside of people who wouldn’t vote democratic anyway.

    Just my personal experience as a white guy in very rural Illinois, Indiana, and now Texas.

    @Gustopher: I was closeted until my 30s too because if I had come out it would of been a death sentence. I was only able to come out of the closet because I moved +1100 miles from my rural hometown a decade ago. I knew very well what I wanted by that point so I don’t find any of it odd. Dating women to keep the facade up and/or in an attempt to convince retrain yourself to like women isn’t that far of a stretch.

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  40. Jay L Gischer says:

    @Gustopher: To be honest, the meticulous attention to appearance is one of those things that pings my gaydar, so it doesn’t seem much like “he must be hiding something” to me. No, he’s trying to look good to other (gay) men. And it just sort of became a habit.

    But yeah, if there’s dirt, the sooner we find it, the better.

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  41. Jen says:

    @Kylopod: Of course it’s simplistic. I wasn’t parsing data, I was noting that Democrats generally are far less likely to be the “NOPE he’s gay, not gonna vote for him” than Republicans.

    Buttigieg’s broader concern is general African-American/black support. That there is a minority within that voter group that would have an issue with him being gay is likely the least of his concerns. Those “religiously conservative” Democratic voters have been fine holding their noses and voting for pro-choice candidates, haven’t they?

    As far as getting voters to the polls–Biden is going to have this problem too. He’s old, and appears way past his prime. Progressives think he’s too centrist. What I am watching is for which candidate is capturing the young people’s vote. They are unreliable AF at the voting booth, and they need to be “excited” to bother voting in years past.

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  42. Scott F. says:

    @EddieInCA:

    Can you help me with your reasoning, because I don’t see how you get that Trump is that close to 270 using Morning Consult’s Approval by State tracker? First, there are a lot of key states (like Pennsylvania and Wisconsin) that are in negative net approval as of May and some other big prizes (Florida and Texas) that are close to zero net approval. Plus, I don’t think minimally positive net approval translates directly to electoral votes. Finally, if you move that slider to the right (great interactive tool BTW), you’ll see the map is getting redder as time passes. That doesn’t exactly scream “all is good.”

    Besides, this data doesn’t look at candidate to candidate polling, so there’s nothing here that indicates to me that Biden, Hickenlooper, or Bennet would fair any better than Warren, Harris or Buttigieg.

    Nonetheless, I concede all your points about the advantages of incumbency, positive economic outlook and rallying to a war time president that Trump will/could bring to the 2020 campaign. It’s just that none of these are mitigated by the Democrats running a more cautious campaign and nominating a more “electable” candidate. If all the intangibles are in Trump’s favor (even after all this BS), then the Dems could run the ghost of Eisenhower and still lose.

    2020 doesn’t strike me as a Play it Safe election. And again, I really hope I’m right.

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  43. Gustopher says:

    @EddieInCA: I wish the morning consult tool had data going back to Trump’s campaign, rather than just since his inauguration.

    Based on their data, I see Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin as likely Democratic pickups, with Ohio and Florida both in play (although they will likely disappoint in the end), so long as the Democrats don’t nominate someone as unpopular as Hillary Clinton.

    I would feel more comfortable if Beto was doing better, as who doesn’t like a young straight white man? I’d rather not pay the electoral cost of a woman or minority candidate at the same time we are fighting incumbency, but Beto appears to not be exciting a lot of people. An exciting woman or minority candidate will do better than second white man from the right on day one of the Democratic debate, whoever that was.

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  44. Gustopher says:

    @Matt: But how old are you, and how mobile were you?

    Being gay at Oxford in the 2000s isn’t a death sentence. Buttigieg had options that you probably didn’t (are you a good looking and awesome genius who succeeds at nearly everything due to a mixture of talent and perseverance, and a Rhodes scholar?). You may be underestimating the advantages he has in life (many of those advantages being the result of his hard work)

    I was openly bisexual in college around 1990. There were lots of gays. It was not as liberal as Oxford, nor as far from home, but it was still safe.

    The packaged Buttigieg is too crisply packaged. I don’t trust that, and this is an area where it doesn’t quite make sense to me. I like him, but I kind of don’t trust him.

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  45. Gustopher says:

    @Scott F.:

    2020 doesn’t strike me as a Play it Safe election.

    Has playing it safe worked for either party in the last 50 years?

    George H. W. Bush was the safe choice, and ran against Dukakis, who was also the safe choice.

    Bob Dole? Al Gore? John Kerry? Mittens Romney? Hillary Clinton? All safe choices, all lost.

    I want Biden to either fade away, or get unhinged.

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  46. Gustopher says:

    @Gustopher: I just want to add that I would love for someone to point me to another interview where Buttigieg coming out so late was discussed and where he was more open.

    His announcement speech touched upon how if he wishes he could tell his 15 year old self that things would turn out better than alright and that yeah he’s gay, and that was a great moment.

    But that giant empty space in his life story between confused closeted high school boy and coming out after his tour in Afghanistan and then meeting the wonderful Chasten (who seems quite lovely)… the giant empty space is a big yellow flag to me that screams “caution.”

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  47. Gustopher says:

    @Scott F.: I’d vote for Williamson over Trump or Yang.

    Let us all hope it never comes to that.

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  48. Jen says:

    @Gustopher: I don’t disagree with you, BUT…

    Some of us have led really boring lives, scared about the “whatever” if we didn’t stay in line. I have tried to think of what would be considered “dirt” on me, and honestly, it’s really dull stuff.

    There is a chance that due to his upbringing and just general personality that he’s had an uneventful personal life either because of, or in spite of, his orientation. It does happen. Heck, save a few turns and twists of fate, I could well have ended up marrying the guy from my first “real” relationship. Life is funny that way.

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  49. EddieInCA says:

    Gustopher says:
    Monday, July 1, 2019 at 19:19

    @Scott F.: I’d vote for Williamson over Trump or Yang.

    A rotted roadkill corpse.
    A three headed squirrel.
    A Leper with AIDS and Ebola who listens to Nickleback.

    Some of the things I would vote for instead of Trump, Yang or Williamson.

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  50. An Interested Party says:

    Hickenlooper was the very popular and effective governor of my home state. One of the reasons I currently favor him is his track record here in Colorado…

    He would do his country, his state, and his political party a huge favor if he ran for the Senate this year rather than running for president…it would also be a more realistic goal for him…

    They have amazing data, but it might depress you. Trump is still, after all this BS, close to 270, based on Approval Ratings per state. And looking at that map, I don’t see how Harris or Mayor Pete, or Warren gets to 270.

    Really? The most current version of that map shows Trump underwater in the exact states that Obama won…

    I would feel more comfortable if Beto was doing better, as who doesn’t like a young straight white man?

    Another one who would be better served running for the Senate this year…most of these presidential candidates are running quixotic campaigns and some of them should instead be running for the Senate to help strip McConnell of his power…

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  51. EddieInCA says:

    @An Interested Party:

    Another one who would be better served running for the Senate this year…most of these presidential candidates are running quixotic campaigns and some of them should instead be running for the Senate to help strip McConnell of his power…

    This. Add Bullock, Castro and Ryan.

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  52. Matt says:

    @Gustopher:

    Mobility was an issue as I lived in a very rural area of Illinois/Indiana that had very few options for good paying work. Most of the good paying jobs vanished when the canning related factories closed or scaled back operations. The factories went to Mexico post NAFTA. Most jobs left there are basically minimum wage or decent factory wage but 40 minutes of driving one way. If it’s flooding, snowing, icing, or such then the commute can easily be impossible. Last I knew they all used point systems and were absurdly strict about enforcing them. So you can see how they keep wages lower via turnover. They have a captive pool of desperate people trying to make a living.

    In the 2000s it wouldn’t of been a litterly death sentence (90s possibly would of been though) but I would been dead in the mind of most of my relatives. Sure Oxford might of been fine with it but what about Pete’s family and friends back home in south bend? Have you ever been to South Bend? It’s a big small town in the middle of a sea of red…

    @Gustopher:

    But that giant empty space in his life story between confused closeted high school boy and coming out after his tour in Afghanistan and then meeting the wonderful Chasten (who seems quite lovely)… the giant empty space is a big yellow flag to me that screams “caution.”

    I don’t get what you want here. Pete’s actions during that era are well known. Are you demanding to know if Pete was secretly fooling around with men or something?

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  53. Matt says:

    @Gustopher:

    are you a good looking and awesome genius who succeeds at nearly everything due to a mixture of talent and perseverance, and a Rhodes scholar?

    I could of been but I was too caught up in the anti-intellectualism that existed and still exists. It wasn’t cool to be smart so I acted dumb. I was so effective at this that my school district actually gave me a real IQ test because they thought I was mentally handicapped based on my school performance. I scored so high they wanted to skip me a few grades because they thought I was bored (which I was).

    So I guess you could say I was never really able to be who I was because the environment didn’t allow for it.

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  54. Gustopher says:

    @Matt:

    I don’t get what you want here. Pete’s actions during that era are well known. Are you demanding to know if Pete was secretly fooling around with men or something?

    I want to understand the man before he becomes the nominee, and not just guess as to how he made some of the biggest decisions in his life. And I want some idea that we aren’t going to get a surprise that’s going to frighten people in swing states.

    He presents himself as the “ideal” gay man who no one who is at all open to the possibility of a gay president could object to. He’s married with rescue dogs, and don’t worry about any past that might make the moderately homophobic voters skittish because there isn’t a past. Possible, but improbable.

    At the same time I would be very uncomfortable with him as a nominee if he didn’t figure out he was gay until he was 35. He just wouldn’t be done growing up yet.

    We know his professional career, but nothing about his personal life before a few years ago. He has said that he wasn’t out because it would affect his political and military career — does that mean he didn’t figure it out until after he left McKinsey? Did he use a spreadsheet to work it out? When he finally told his family did they just say “oh, honey, how can you be coming out now when everyone has known for the past decade?”

    He doesn’t wear his heart on his sleeve the way Elizabeth Warren does (does anyone have any doubt of her motives for anything?), and I don’t expect him to. But I do want him to open up and not just be playing the role of Pete Buttigieg, at least a little bit.

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  55. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Teve: I hadn’t paid any attention, but the fact that he is very slim and well built (probably from being in the military, but genes probably didn’t hurt either) will do that on shirts. He may also buy from various MtM outlets. I’d bought bespoke tailored shirts when I was younger and while I was in Korea. The surprising thing to me is always that they’re only a few dollars more than ready to wear. Longer lasting and better looking, too.

    The only downside is that they don’t come in perma-press fabrics.

    ReplyReply
  56. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Jen: Only 10? I’d be more likely to say a generation or two but would be happy for you to be right and get to see who the first woman President is.

    ReplyReply
  57. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @An Interested Party: Yeah, it’s so sad that his administration was only the most conservative since Eisenhower’s. Imagine what we could have had if it had been Larry Elder or another “real” conservative.

    ReplyReply
  58. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @EddieInCA: I see what you’re saying, but I approach it differently. You don’t need the Democrats who voted for Trump; you need the ones who voted for Stein, Johnson, or “none of the above.” But you are right about 60k voters. I like a margin of error so I would say you need closer to 200k worth.

    ETA: “…vote for Trump over anyone the Democrats run (save Williamson).” Even Williamson would be no more inept than Trump and would likely be less toxic overall. Williamson should be a “go” ( but fortunately is unlikely to be the nominee).

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  59. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    Has he gone through college and a decade after carefully avoiding dates?

    I dated 4 women total in college (including 3 I went out with once only) and another 3 in the 10 years after I graduated (each of those were one-offs), so I have not problems understanding the logistics. I’m glad you do however; it makes me confident to see that most people aren’t like me.

    ReplyReply
  60. Jen says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker: I can be a hopeless optimist sometimes.

    The real math behind the 10+ guess is that by then, Millennials will be fully in their 40s and 50s, and a good chunk of GenZ will be in their 30’s, and therefore more reliable voters.

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  61. Gustopher says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker: The lack of permanent press fabrics in bespoke shirts is a dealbreaker for me. An ill fitting shirt looks better on me than a wrinkled one.

    Ironing just isn’t going to happen.

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  62. Monala says:

    @EddieInCA: Serious question, because I don’t know: if some of these folks decide to drop out of the presidential race, can they then run for Senate? How soon would they have to drop out to do so? Are there any rules governing it, or is it just a matter of logistics? And could their presidential runs be a way of getting their name out there, making possible Senate runs more feasible?

    ReplyReply
  63. Matt says:

    @Gustopher:

    He presents himself as the “ideal” gay man

    Where in hell are you getting this crap? Pete doesn’t even bring up the subject of being gay in interviews (it’s other people who end up bringing it up via questions). He certainly doesn’t go around stating how he’s the ideal gay man or anything of that manner.

    I mean seriously it’s bizarre that you’re asking all these questions of Pete while not giving a shit about the non gay candidates who have just as a “mysterious” personal life.

    I have doubts about some of Warren’s motives and I don’t even know who she’s married to. Why doesn’t she tell us how she found him and why he was the one and why she didn’t date more /impression of your questioning of Pete…

    Pete has been just as open about his personal life as Warren yet you’re only concerned about Pete and you can’t even express what this concern is really about.

    Why are you holding a gay man to a different standard than the straight men and women?

    ReplyReply
  64. Jen says:

    @Monala: I’m pretty sure it’s dependent upon state filing deadlines. Varies from state to state.

    ReplyReply
  65. Gustopher says:

    @Matt:

    Why are you holding a gay man to a different standard than the straight men and women?

    The swing voter in the Pennsylvania suburbs are going to react very differently to the straight acting gay candidate with no past, and a guy who wore assless chaps while riding an enormous fake shlong.

    The first job of the nominee is to get elected — in this world, and not in some perfect world where that shit doesn’t matter.

    Coming out three years before running for President is … curious. There’s a story behind it. A story that either is reassuring to those voters or not. A story that might be that he isn’t done growing up. Or a story that he is deliberately not telling because it will frighten the squares in Squaresville, WI. And few people come out all at once.

    And, I would point out that with great ambition also often comes great hubris. John Edward’s second family comes to mind.

    If he’s being taken seriously, especially as the first gay candidate, he’s got to fill in the gaps.

    People are terrible. Obama couldn’t risk being the angry black man, and Pete either has to be the most boring gay guy or make it fine for those PA suburban voters. And it’s not just those “first” candidates either. Harris has to deal with claims she slept her way through California politics, and Biden has 40 years of history where even if he was great 90% of the time there’s 4 years of crap.

    Pete Buttigieg is damn good at packaging himself as a product. I’m wary of that. I look at the things he leaves out in the Packaged Pete.

    (And, we know all about Warren’s collection of husbands (two), it’s in one of her books and it pops up in interviews. And if you hear her talking about issues she is passionate about, her voice cracks a little. She is an open book — people might not like the book, but it’s open).

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  66. Matt says:

    @Gustopher: All these questions you keep asking have already been answered in detail. You’re acting like some of the resident RW trolls demanding to know about her emails… I was hoping my Warren statement/question would cause you to realize what you’re doing but apparently it hasn’t. Just because you haven’t looked for or listened to the information doesn’t mean it’s not out there.

    Here I’ll even get the ball rolling for you.
    https://lmgtfy.com/?q=pete+buttigieg+why+did+he+come+out+as+gay

    https://www.boston.com/news/politics/2019/04/03/pete-buttigieg-gay-coming-out

    Pete is basically a “boring” white man who grew up in an area dominated by religious right wingers and slightly more moderate Republican voters. I don’t see anything in his behavior that would be considered out of the ordinary considering the area he grew up in. I grew up in the area and it wasn’t until I was able to leave that I was finally able to be myself. So his delay is completely understandable for me. Hell he was probably partially in denial for some time like me.

    The motivation for Pete coming out prior to running for re-election as mayor is already well told in numerous articles/interviews available on the net. Pete served in the military from 2009-2017 including a stint in Afghanistan while he was mayor. This is not a guy you’re going to find wearing assless chaps or any of the negative stereotypes. What does surprise me is that he came out as gay prior to leaving the military. Granted he only served for two more years but that’s not something that would be easy to do by any standards.

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  67. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Gustopher: I just talk myself into believing that my dress shirts are “relaxed looking” though I do send them to the commercial laundry two or three times a year. While I was in Korea, I always sent them out, at less than $2/shirt, I couldn’t be bothered doing them myself at all. (Some single men I knew sent ALL of their laundry out.)

    ReplyReply

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