Pete Buttigieg says being a gay 'stranger in my own country' helps him connect with African-Americans

During the Democratic candidates' debate hosted by MSNBC on Wednesday, the mayor of South Bend, Indiana said he welcomed "the challenge of connecting with black voters in America who don’t know me."


                            Pete Buttigieg says being a gay 'stranger in my own country' helps him connect with African-Americans

According to Mayor Pete Buttigieg, his experience as a gay “stranger in my own country” helps him connect with African-Americans whose support is indispensable for him to overcome former Vice President Joe Biden and Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA).

During the Democratic candidates' debate hosted by MSNBC on Wednesday, the mayor of South Bend, Indiana said he welcomed "the challenge of connecting with black voters in America who don’t know me," Breitbart reports.

"Before I share what’s in my plans, let me talk about what’s in my heart and why this is so important," Buttigieg continued. "As mayor of a city that is racially diverse and largely low-income for eight years, I have lived and breathed the successes and struggles of the community, where far too many people live with the consequences of a racial inequity that has built up over centuries, but then compounded by policies and decisions from within living memory."

South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg greets his husband Chasten Glezman (R) after announcing that he will be seeking the Democratic nomination for president during a rally in the old Studebaker car factory on April 14, 2019, in South Bend, Indiana. (Getty Images)

The mayor said his faith taught him to make himself useful to those "who have been excluded, marginalized, and cast aside and oppressed in society."

"I care about this because while I do not have the experience of ever having been discriminated against because of the color of my skin, I do have the experience of sometimes feeling like a stranger in my own country," he added.

Buttigieg said he knew how "deep my obligation is to help those whose rights are on the line" after seeing his own rights come up for debate and how a coalition of people "not at all" like him worked hand-in-hand to make it possible for him to be wearing "this wedding ring in a way that couldn’t have happened two elections ago."

South Bend has a population of 100,000, with at least 25% black voters. That said, Buttigieg's support among African Americans is critically low when compared to the support enjoyed by Biden in the early-voting state of South Carolina.

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