South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg, a 2020 Democratic presidential candidate, is dealing with left-wing backlash over a resurfaced 2011 clip that shows him talking about challenges faced by minority students.
The video shows Buttigieg, then a mayoral candidate, saying that “there are a lot of kids, especially the lower-income minority neighborhoods who literally just haven’t seen it work, there isn’t somebody they know personally who testifies to the value of education.”
“Kids” from “lower income, minority neighborhoods” don’t have “someone they know personally who testifies to the value of education.” – Pete Buttigieg, 2011 South Bend Mayoral Candidate #MayorPete #PeteForAmerica #Pete2020 #Buttigieg2020 #Buttigieg pic.twitter.com/sd1bZDLoG8
— Resist Programming ? (@RzstProgramming) November 24, 2019
A writer at The Root called Buttigieg “a lying motherf—er” in response to the video.
“This is not a misunderstanding. This is not a misstatement. Pete Buttigieg went to the best educational institutions America has to offer and he — more than anyone on the godd—ed planet — knows that everything he just said is a baldfaced lie,” Michael Harriot wrote in the Monday article, which was widely shared among left-wing journalists.
The writer said Buttigieg’s answer “proves men like him are more willing to perpetuate the fantastic narrative of negro neighborhoods needing more role models and briefcase-carriers than make the people in power stare into the sun and see the blinding light of racism.”
Speaking about children in “lower-income, minority neighborhoods” in 2011, @PeteButtigieg said, “There isn’t someone who they know personally who testifies to the value of education.” @michaelharriot delivers a moving and fitting retort to that falsehood. https://t.co/saHQGemTEP
— Jamil Smith (@JamilSmith) November 26, 2019
The adverb here is a twisting knife
“Kids need to see evidence that education is going to work for them,” Buttigieg explained whitely https://t.co/mZumKv75XJ
— Farhad Manjoo (@fmanjoo) November 26, 2019
“While I obviously think that the characterization of me personally is unfair, I do understand the concern,” Buttigieg, who has consistently struggled with black voters, told a reporter when asked about the article’s characterization of him.
The article’s popularity led the hashtag “#PeteButtigiegIsALyingMF” to surge into Twitter’s national trending topics.
See’s #PeteButtigiegIsaLyingMF trending. Shakes Head. Goes to kitchen to get more coffee. Looks for brandy bottle. Will need something strong with my #morningcoffee before I can click on and see what the man did now. SMH. WOW!
— Sophia A. Nelson (@IAmSophiaNelson) November 26, 2019
#PeteButtigiegIsALyingMF It would be amazing if Buttigieg read the Michael Harriot piece, then responded recognizing the mistakes he has made.
But amazing doesn’t happen that often.
— John Lurie (@lurie_john) November 26, 2019
Some conservatives defended Buttigieg against the attacks.
The Washington Examiner’s Eddie Scarry described the The Root article as “nonsense.”
“Buttigieg didn’t lie about education; he gave a perspective that’s actually backed by substantial data,” The Daily Wire’s Ben Shapiro added. “But for Democrats, pointing out that educational outcome disparities are not entirely the result of systemic racism is political suicide.”
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