It’s a new day in the political mud pit. And this week, the main event is “Pete Buttigieg vs. The World.”
To everyone far and wide who’s decided it’s time to cover the greatest candidate ever, I say… welcome to the party, finally! I bought my cat a three dollar stuffed mouse once and she didn’t play with it for months, no matter how many times I dangled it in her face. Then, one day all on her own, she “discovered” it under the floor mat and started batting it around, night and day, trying to rip off its ears and smash the stuffing out of it.
And that’s where we find ourselves with Pete: the ear-ripping, stuffing-smashing stage where the press and the other candidates discover what Pete is really made of. By the way, that little mouse never, ever came apart and eventually the cat realized it was being outsmarted and gave up. I’ll leave that there for ya.
Why is everyone suddenly attacking Pete now? Because the first polls revealing him to be a front-runner didn’t prove to be outliers. Because American voters continue to make donations to his campaign. Because every time he speaks, he re-assures the nation he actually is that bright, that intuitive, that reasonable, that thoughtful, and that far ahead of everyone else in the field.
Because Pete Buttigieg is suddenly amazing copy, and everyone needs the attention. And as an unemployed dude with too much time on his hands, it’s my job to have some fun at their expense.
Joe Biden recently accused Pete of “stealing Medicare for all who want it.” But it turns out Pete didn’t steal it. He just set it near the front door so Joe wouldn’t keep forgetting where he left it. The other day Joe challenged a man in his eighties to a push-up contest. The man accepted and they both hit the ground. And as soon as the Life Alert teams show up and break through the front window, we’ll know who the winner is.
Lawrence O’Donnell went at Pete for not giving Democrats any credit for shrinking the deficit. In case you don’t know who Lawrence O’Donnell is, he’s the guy that comes on between Rachel Maddow and Brian Williams, giving the world a free hour to go and do more important things like rinse out the crock pot and do shadow puppets. It isn’t that I don’t like Lawrence O’Donnell or simply resent him for attacking Pete. I find him to be a real dip in quality and content as opposed to Maddow and Williams. In the 1980s, NBC had a blockbuster Thursday night of television: The Cosby Show, Family Ties, Cheers and Hill Street Blues. But sandwiched in the middle of all these great shows, there was also Night Court, which was at best worthy of an occasional snicker. Lawrence O’Donnell is the Night Court of MSNBC, fortunate to have a plum timeslot where he can hold all the viewers who lost the remote control when they moved over from the last house.
Elizabeth Warren. Well, she didn’t exactly excoriate Pete this week. But she did insist he release the names of all his wealthy donors. In case anyone forgets that Elizabeth Warren used to happily take money from wealthy donors and is still sitting on a lot of it, you won’t be surprised to hear she forgot to mention it this week. In fact, she pulled $10 million leftover bucks from her last Senate run and threw it into the till for her presidential campaign. You know, the “grassrootsy” campaign where she won’t take any big money and wears the same damn pair of earrings every day to prove it. I like Elizabeth Warren and she’s stayed above the dirt-slinging for the most part. But she can’t hide the facts. She’s like the campaign’s Scrooge McDuck, sitting on bags of money with little dollar signs scribbled on the fronts but crying poor with those little duck nephews come over and hit her up for a loan.
Tulsi Gabbard, who accused Pete of wanting to invade Mexico and give it to L.A. as extra parking for Lakers games, thankfully took the week off to come up with new and exciting things to tell us about the word “Aloha.” She never mentions that “Aloha” can mean “goodbye” as well as “hello.” I guess she doesn’t want us getting any ideas.
For some reason, even though he rudely went after Pete in the debate, whenever I make a joke about Beto O’Rourke, I get slammed to high heaven. Not for mocking anyone else, just Beto. I’d like to point out that when Beto ran against Ted Cruz, I donated 10% of my paycheck every single week to his campaign. I enjoy Beto’s enthusiasm and appreciate the work he did to strengthen himself as a national contender, but ultimately, I think he faltered more than succeeded. Nevertheless, Beto’s going to be around in the future because clearly his fans defend him against cheap shots, even against me, a guy who will be the first to download his upcoming album of Limp Bizkit cover songs.
We haven’t heard anything from Tom Steyer and Mike Bloomberg this week, two dudes who have a lot of money and think it can remove all obstacles from their path, which kind of makes them the political version of The Menendez brothers. I tried calling them to get quotes about Pete, but their campaigns said they were too busy training for the Boston Marathon. They’re not actually going to run the whole thing; they’re just gonna sneak in at Mile 21.
The New York Times has suddenly been running Pete stories on a daily basis. They’ve most recently decided to focus on his time at McKinsey & Company, which I suppose is fair, though I hope no one ever judges me for my first job out of college. I was a host at Hamburger Mary’s, a gay-themed burger joint in San Jose. I probably didn’t pull down the same salary as Pete, but on the other hand, Pete didn’t get tips wiggling his hips around to RuPaul’s “Supermodel” in tight jeans and a t-shirt that read, “I’ll sleep with all your friends!”
Look, for months, I’ve been doing all I can to insist on an in-depth and fair focus on Pete Buttigieg from the serious media, and from Lawrence O’Donnell. I will of course be a little snarky about it, but I’m not going to complain that the news stories and mentions from other candidates have finally arrived and aren’t rapt with fondness and adulation. It’s America. They’re free to speak their minds, and they’re playing well within the rules of political propriety. And yes, questions are important. But there’s a difference between legitimate questions, which Maddow and Williams do, and trolling for clicks and attention, which is what my shrink says I do.
Besides, we all realize this just means everyone else has finally caught up to what we know already: Pete Buttigieg is not just a candidate, he’s a movement. As poll numbers wobble for Sanders, Liz and Joe, Pete’s numbers retain a steady growth.
I am voting Pete Buttigieg for president. Full Stop.
I have been following Pete, learning about Pete, and listening to Pete since April of this year, and nothing anyone says about him is going to sway me. My mind is 100% made up. Pete Buttigieg is the best choice for the next president.
So I say, let them all dig. Let them all sling. I just am not going to care. If Lindsey Graham doesn’t have to read the impeachment transcripts, I don’t have to read any “breaking news” about Pete Buttigieg talking too loud at a movie, eating sushi with a fork, or forgetting to put down the seat.
Call me when he says Daniel Craig sucks as Bond, and I might listen.