Pete Buttigieg Forced to Wait in Hallway While East Palestine Mayor Spoke with Rudy Giuliani First
There’s been a wry joke going around on the internet for the last few months: The Biden administration’s Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg is doing such a bad job, we actually all know the name of the secretary of transportation.
Buttigieg added to his embarrassing reputation Thursday during his belated visit to the site of the disastrous train derailment in East Palestine, Ohio. Buttigieg waited 20 days before visiting the impacted area.
After such a delay, it was not surprising that Buttigieg was left cooling the heels of his dress boots in a hallway for half an hour while East Palestine’s Mayor Trent Conaway spoke with an actual leader, Rudy Giuliani.
The White House ignored the citizens of the East Palestine area after the Feb. 3 derailment of a Norfolk Southern train carrying toxic chemicals. Conaway criticized Biden for traveling to Ukraine, which has received billions of dollars in aid, while neglecting Ohio.
“That was the biggest slap in the face. That tells you right now he doesn’t care about us,” Conway told Fox News.
Buttigieg also showed indifference to the transportation-related ecological disaster on American soil. When Buttigieg was finally pressured into commenting on East Palestine, he tried to wave it off as a routine event.
Buttigieg said, “While this horrible situation has gotten a particularly high amount of attention, there are roughly 1,000 cases a year of a train derailing.”
Twitter users pointed out the spin and missing context in Buttigieg’s blasé statement.
Yeah, I’m curious how many of those thousand derailments involve tens of thousands of gallons of hazardous chemicals being released into the environment.
— SuperHei (@SupermanBK201) February 16, 2023
“Buttigieg is now minimizing the disaster in East Palestine, Ohio,” wrote Benny Johnson of Turning Point USA.
“Yeah, I’m curious how many of those thousand derailments involve tens of thousands of gallons of hazardous chemicals being released into the environment,” @SupermanBK201 replied.
It took action from Donald Trump before Buttigieg took grudging action. Trump visited the region on Wednesday.
After weeks of criticism about Buttigeig’s snub, and Trump’s sincere aid and support for the people of East Palestine, any follow-up by the transportation secretary was anticlimactic.
Twitter user David Marcus noted the failure on display.
The only thing stupider than Buttigieg not visiting East Palestine is visiting the day after Trump.
— David Marcus (@BlueBoxDave) February 23, 2023
“The only thing stupider than Buttigieg not visiting East Palestine is visiting the day after Trump,” Marcus tweeted.
On Thursday, The Daily Mail reported Conaway prioritized a mayor-on-mayor meeting with Rudy Giuliani over meeting with Buttigieg. “I’m here to offer my experience with crisis management, as I’m concerned by the federal government’s slow response,’ Giuliani said.
The transportation secretary was reportedly left waiting in a hallway for 30 minutes.
Buttigieg’s day did not get any better. Some residents told the Daily Mail their town only received attention because of Trump’s Wednesday visit.
According to the Daily Wire, as Buttigieg made a statement, he committed more embarrassing gaffes. He mispronounced the name of the town.
While scolding the audience about “misinformation,” which usually means facts that are bad for Democrats, Buttigieg said he “lost his train of thought,” a very inappropriate choice of words.
Even his footwear added to the controversy. Buttigieg was wearing some kind of fancy boots which looked like dress shoes. Not the best choice to wear to a literal train wreck.
The Daily Caller put together a video montage of Buttigieg’s train wreck of a visit.
His spokeswoman, identified as Kerry Arndt by Fox News, refused to answer questions on camera.
When confronted about whether he would resign or apologize over his mishandling of the situation, Buttigieg replied, “I’m not here for politics, I’m here to make sure the community can get what they need.”
Pete Buttigieg, standing near the Ohio train derailment site today, said he could have spoken “sooner” about the crash.
“I’m not here for politics, I’m here to make sure the community can get what they need,” the transportation secretary said. https://t.co/TmTSFKrsPo
— POLITICO (@politico) February 23, 2023
What the community needed was concerned, caring leadership in a time of emergency. Buttigieg provided none of that. He should both apologize and resign.
Not only does America know Buttigieg’s name, we know he is not up to the job he was installed in.
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