Pete Buttigieg (D)

It’s time for a new generation of American leadership.

The Democratic mayor of South Bend, Indiana, and the youngest candidate in the 2020 presidential race, he presents himself as a new kind of leader who rallies Americans together to solve urgent challenges.

Buttigieg is a Rhodes Scholar who attended Harvard College and Oxford University and can speak multiple languages. He has based his campaign on the idea of generational change within American politics and governance. Initially considered a fringe candidate, his campaign has now made significant momentum.  He is also the first openly gay man to contest for the Democratic presidential nomination.

Pete’s signature issues

Pete believes that the Electoral college seeks to dilute the voting power of marginalized communities based on demographic trends and wants to replace the Electoral college with a National Popular Vote. He aims to-

  • Strengthen cybersecurity to defend our elections and improve the voting infrastructure, so there is a paper trail to account for every vote.
  • Take bold, decisive action to eliminate greenhouse gas pollution and  Deploy at least 1 Gigaton of annual CO2 removal capacity by 2040, including direct air capture. All while creating new jobs
  • Bring forth major criminal justice reforms to reduce the incarcerated population within the country at both the federal and state level by at least 50%.
Issues That Matter

Mayor Pete envisions an economy that delivers more to all Americans. Families need higher incomes and lower costs and a brighter future for all our children. In the US, everyone should see a share of economic gains, and everyone should have access to real opportunities. To ensure that the next generation is always better off than the previous ones. 

He believes that the country’s success should not be measured by the size of the stock market or gross domestic product but by the success of middle and working-class families, and to ensure that he has outlined some steps-

  • Lowering the cost of housing, healthcare, higher education, and childcare. Americans should be able to maintain a certain standard of living at affordable prices.
  • Pass a $15 minimum wage, end the tipped and sub-minimum wage. Deliver a raise to the over 25 million low and middle-wage workers.
  • Protect and grow unions. End the so-called “Right to work” laws and enact strict and heavy penalties for employers who interfere in union matters. Ensure that gig workers can unionize — overall expansion of union protections and powers.
  • Provide high-speed broadband internet to underserved and rural communities to unlock their potential for small business ownership and exposure to better employment opportunities. 
Health Care

Mayor Pete believes that the healthcare system in its current state leaves Americans feeling powerless and taken advantage of.

 His plan, “Medicare for all who want it,” will put Americans in charge of their health- by making a public option available at affordable prices and giving Americans a real choice. The plan is designed to either incentivize private insurance firms to offer competitive prices or create a natural glide-path to ” Medicare for all.   

  • End Surprise Billing- About one in five visits to the emergency room is likely to lead to a surprise bill. He will require in-network facilities to be billed as in-network and place limits on what out-of-network providers, including ambulances and air ambulance services, can charge.
  • Take on the big pharmaceutical corporations and lower the cost of prescription drugs as well as lower the co-pay on generic drugs and ensure that all price hikes outside of inflation are penalized
  • Improve the standard of services provided to those living in residential care facilities, support direct caregivers as well as unpaid family caregivers. 
  • Ensure access to affordable healthcare for all living in rural areas of the country where life expectancy is significantly lower than those in urban areas.

Buttigieg advocates for a higher budget dedicated to improving the country’s cyber defenses and elections security. Protect citizen’s data and hold tech companies accountable for reckless or incompetent conduct.

  • He favors paper ballots to secure elections against countries like Russia and China.
  • Stricter regulations on big tech companies and calls for the enforcement of anti-trust laws on large and powerful firms like Facebook.
  • He believes that the citizens have a “Right to be forgotten,” the right of citizens to delete all records of their data off the internet.
Criminal Justice

Buttigieg is dedicated to being the leader that will take bold action at a federal level to not just reduce crime but also reduce the prison population. He believes we need a legal system that benefits all and promotes true justice. To this end, he intends to-

  • Eliminate incarceration for drug possession, reduce punishment for other drug-related charges. Legalize marijuana and expunge previous convictions on a federal level.
  • Eliminate mandatory minimums, impose sentencing caps, and focus on real reform.
  • He plans to exclude the profit motive from the criminal justice system, abolish private federal prisons, and cap the amount of revenue that cities and counties can generate from fines.

Buttigieg thinks that in the US, the quality of education a child receives is too often dependent on the zip code. He’s dedicated to providing educators, especially those of color, should be treated as soldiers and paid like doctors. He believes the system requires a complete overhaul.

  • He pledges that his administration will invest in the students early, provide universal full-day childcare and pre-K from infancy to age 5, this will be $700 billion investment serving more than 20 million children.
  • Combat racial and socioeconomic segregation and bias through investments in equity, mixed-subsidy classrooms, transportation, and ending preschool suspension and expulsion.
  • Pete pledges to make public tuition-free for 80% of American families, including all families earning up to $100,000 and many middle-income families with multiple children. He will also provide substantial tuition subsidies for students from families earning up to $150,000 and require that states improve affordability for all students.
  • Pete will aggressively pursue accountability for for-profit colleges that leave students with unaffordable debt and without viable job prospects.

Pete is determined to create an immigration system that reflects what the American people want; a majority of Americans support a pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants. To facilitate this, Pete intends to-

  • Support the Differed action for childhood arrivals, he has spoken up against the ruthless deportation practices of the current administration and wants to review them on a federal level.
  • Create a “National office of New Americans” to promote & support immigrant and refugee integration.
  • Implement significant structural changes to modernize the visa system.
  • End discriminatory travel bans
  • Reform the special visa process to honor the nation’s commitment to assist Iraqi and Afghani individuals of particular importance.

Pete accredits his time as a navy lieutenant in Afghanistan was a life-changing experience because it provided him with an opportunity to serve with the people of every conceivable background. He aims to root his campaign and then later his administration, in the ethos of service-

  • He believes that the use of military force should be reserved only for cases of core US interest as a last resort.
  • He opposes the use of force to protect global oil supplies.
  • He thinks it’s time to shift priorities towards threats like insurgencies, cyber weapons, and drones rather than conventional forms of war.
  • He is determined to provide more substantial investment to reform the Veteran Affairs health care system to include mental health needs.
  • Increase paid service opportunities for “motivated changemakers” in AmeriCorps and PeaceCorps.
Gun Control

Pete believes that gun violence is an urgent health crisis that needs to be addressed immediately to secure the communities most vulnerable to this epidemic. He wants to put forth bold solutions to this problem-

  • Expand background checks to all gun sales, including unlicensed sellers online or at gun shows, and establish a comprehensive “permit-to-purchase” licensing system at the state level.
  • Promote safe storage practices and require law enforcement to be notified when guns are lost or stolen.
  • Close the loopholes in federal law that allows people convicted of hate crimes and misdemeanor domestic violence crime from buying firearms.
  • Restore funding to the Centre for Disease Control and National Institute of Health for gun violence research.
  • Ban the sale of assault weapons, high capacity magazines, ghost guns, and at-home 3D firearms printing.
Foreign Policy

Buttigieg says that the current administration has “fractured & endangered” US alliances. He believes that “countering climate change, promoting democracy and human rights” should be a central goal of US diplomacy.

  • He intends to repair US relations with NATO allies.
  • Recommit the US to the Paris Agreement as well as the Iran nuclear deal.
  • He thinks that the State Department and other national security agencies should offer more flexible career paths to be able to compete with the private sector.
  • He believes that the best way to curb the Central American migration & refugee problem is to promote prosperity and stability in that region.

Pete believes that democracy means that when it comes to choosing the nations’ leaders, nothing should be allowed to overrule the vote of the American people

  • He is determined to replace the electoral college with a popular vote.
  • He intends to expand the supreme court to fifteen judges, only ten of them will be politically appointed by Presidents, the rest shall only be seated by unanimous consent of those ten.
  • He firmly believes that the citizens united court case that allowed corporations, non-profits, and unions to contribute to campaigns should be overturned.
Cannabis & Marijuana

Pete believes that regulating recreational marijuana should be a personal responsibility issue and should be decriminalized. 

He argues that racial disparity is attached to whether somebody is likely to experience imprisonment as a consequence of a non-violent drug offense. It is also evident from the rate of incarceration that decriminalizing & legalizing marijuana is the most rational option going forward.

Climate and Energy

Pete considers climate change to be a “Life-and-death” issue for the current generation. He has proposed a climate plan that seeks to transition the US away from carbon-intensive energy sources.

  • His climate plan aims for zero greenhouse emissions from electricity by 2035 and net zero emissions by 2050.
  • He advocates for a global push to phase out coal-fired power by incorporating it into trade agreements.
  • He plans to maintain the existing nuclear power generators but doesn’t support expanding nuclear power due to concerns over waste management.
  • He proposes expanding national service programs focused on conservation and building resilience to climate change.
Trade & Agriculture

Pete opposes economic isolationism and says that the U.S. must compete for global markets, but trade deals must benefit American workers.

He similarly objects to farm subsidies, saying, “We shouldn’t have to pay farmers to take the edge off of a trade war that shouldn’t have been started in the first place.”

  • Farmers reliance on the federal government has grown in recent decades, and Buttigieg suggests unrestricted international market access to counter that.
  • He opposed the Obama administration’s Asia-Pacific trade deal, TPP saying the provisions listed in the deal’s current form are not in the U.S.’s interest.
  • He supports the U.S.-Mexico- Canada Agreement, Trump’s renegotiated version of NAFTA. He says it will benefit U.S. consumers, workers, and farmers.
Social & Religious Issues

Buttigieg has repeatedly stated  that “God does not belong to a political party in the United States of America.” He has talked about religion more than most other candidates from his party. He is also the first openly gay presidential candidate in US history. He believes that systemic bigotry has touched every part of American life, from health to home-ownership and he intends to usher in a new era-

  • He supports the H.R.40, which proposes a congressional commission to look at reparations as a possible way to mend the generational theft of racism.
  • He favors the Federal Equitability Act, which will allow LGBT Americans to receive federal non-discriminatory protections.
  • He considers abortion a moral choice that should be made by women in consultation with their doctors, not by the government.
  •  He opposes the ban on transgender personnel serving in the military, enacted by the Trump administration.

Buttigieg has repeatedly criticized the 2017 tax reform bill signed by President trump multiple times, stating that it is just another tax cut provided to the wealthy. He has hinted a few tax increases that he would consider implementing as president- 

A higher income tax rates on the wealthy, a carbon emission tax, a financial transaction tax, more equitable use of the estate tax, and eliminating unspecified corporate tax breaks.