South Bend, Ind. Mayor Pete Buttigieg sought to put an end to the notion that his presidential campaign’s struggle to attract black support is solely due to homophobia in the black community.
Asked by MSNBC host Chris Matthews what he would say to those in the black community who have an issue with his “orientation,” Buttigieg quickly dismissed the idea that homophobia is somehow unique to the black community.
“If you are in a black church in South Carolina right now – you are having some numbers problems down there – what would you say to the people who are against you perhaps because of your [sexual] orientation,” Matthews asked the mayor Wednesday night.
“Well I was in a black church in South Carolina a couple of weeks ago and I talked very openly about my orientation,” Buttigieg replied. “We have got to put away this idea that homophobia is somehow something that only applies to the black community or is limited to the black community.”
“Oh, I didn’t mean that,” Matthews interjected.
“Uh no, but some folks out there are saying it and look the reality is that people approach elections, and certainly black voters that I talk to, approach elections with one main question in mind, and it’s this, ‘How is my life gonna be different if you’re president versus one of these other people out there, and why do you care?’ ”
“If I can answer that then I think a lot of other considerations fall to the sideline,” Buttigieg added.
According to the most recent Quinnipiac poll, Sens. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) and Kamala D. Harris (D-Calif.), who are both African American, have even less support than Buttigieg among black voters.
Buttigieg was at 4 percent among black voters in that poll. Harris was at 5 percent, and Booker and Castro were each at 2 percent.
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