Washington, DC – Joseph Biden’s presidential campaign came out swinging February 8th with a whopper of a TV ad taking a back-handed compliment approach to criticizing Pete Buttigieg.
The 60-second ad, which the Biden campaign unveiled in New Hampshire days before the primary on Tuesday, at first blush commends both Biden and Buttigieg for their records in public service. But the ad goes on to say while Biden’s experience as vice president consisted of negotiating the Iran nuclear deal, Obamacare, and the 2009 stimulus package, Buttigieg focused on smaller projects, such as providing decorative lighting for a park bridge in South Bend and ensuring neighborhood pets have homes.
“Both Vice President Biden and former Mayor Pete Buttigieg have taken on tough fights,” the voice-over in the ad says. “Under a threat of a nuclear Iran, Joe Biden helped to negotiate the Iran deal, and under threat of disappearing pets, Buttigieg negotiate lighter licensing regulations on pet chip scanners.” As Buttigieg – who as an openly gay presidential candidate pulled off a historic win this week in Iowa – struggles to win support from black voters, the ad also highlights issues the candidate has had with black people in his city, including firing a black police chief who was investigating racism and subsequently firing a black fire chief.
Chris Meagher, a spokesperson for the Buttigieg campaign, said in a statement criticizing Biden the ad represents a “classic Washington style of politics” from which Americans want to move away. Annise Parker, a former mayor of Houston and CEO of the LGBTQ Victory Fund, said in a statement the Biden ad is “petty and demeaning, especially given Biden himself said he avoided becoming a mayor because the job is so difficult. … As a former mayor myself, I find it insulting that he would belittle the important role mayors play in the everyday lives of their residents,” Parker said. The Washington Blade has put a request in with the Biden campaign seeking comment on criticism of the campaign ad. (The Washington Blade – Chris Johnson at Washingtonblade.com/2020/02/08/new-biden-ad-mocks-buttigiegs-youth-experience-as-mayor)
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