Importantville: Buttigieg Bingo Round 2
South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg enters the second Democratic debate in Detroit this evening with the wind no longer at his back. Though he sits atop $22.7 million in the bank and a slew of new early state and national hires, Buttigieg’s momentum has slowed in the polls: He’s running fifth in early states such as Iowa and New Hampshire, polling in the single digits. He’ll need to do work tonight to expand his message beyond white educated elites.
He’ll share the stage with Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders, Amy Klobuchar, Beto O’Rourke, Marianne Williamson, Tim Ryan, John Hickenlooper, John Delaney, and Steve Bullock.
Talking heads are frothing over a possible Buttigieg matchup with his fellow optimist/aspirational candidate Congressman Beto O’Rourke, but that pairing is more a creation by pundits than one that either candidate has done much to perpetuate. O’Rourke staffers have tweaked Buttigieg for his paid grassroots fundraisers along with his use of private jets to hopscotch across the campaign trail.
“Congressman O’Rourke can feel free to attack the more than 400,000 people who have invested in Pete’s campaign,” Buttigieg’s national press secretary Chris Meagher told CNN recently. “Pete is focused on the future and tackling the changes facing our nation head on—that’s why our campaign has actually gained traction. We’re looking forward to discussing this vision in the next debate.”
Since the last debate, Buttigieg has rolled out two new policies—a full fleshing-out of his “Douglass Plan,” a raft of policies to turn back the effects of systemic racism, and “A New Rising Tide,” a set of proposals designed to change the balance of power between labor and management in the gig economy.
Here, a revised version of Buttigieg Bingo.