As the subject of a highly controversial opinion piece on Friday, South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg has responded to the New Republic's choice to remove said article from their website. The article, titled "My Mayor Pete Problem," written by openly gay and often controversial author Dale Peck, accused Buttigieg of not being "gay enough" and repeatedly referred to him as "Mary Pete." It also included the author's own guesses about Buttigieg's sex life and asserted that he had not been out of the closet long enough to represent the gay community.
The New Republic removed the article on Friday evening after widespread condemnation, and the owner and editor in chief, Win McCormack, issued an apology the following day. He said, in part, "Yesterday The New Republics website published an opinion piece about Mayor Pete Buttigieg that should not have appeared there. As The New Republics owner, I want to extend our sincerest apologies to Mayor Buttigieg, as well as to our readers, for an article that was both inappropriate and offensive. It has been removed from our site."
Buttigieg said to the Associated Press on Saturday, "I appreciated that [the] article was taken down. I don't think it really reflects the New Republic that I know."
The mayor, who is also running for president, then took the opportunity to pivot to another topic. He said, "But the most disturbing news story I saw yesterday was the Vice President's visit to those border facilities," referring to Vice President Mike Pence's trip to McAllen, Texas.
Buttigieg continued, "There were people ... being kept in absolutely inhuman conditions and where he [Pence] seemed totally unable to accept responsibility for the fact that this was happening on his administration's watch and that they could do something about it."
He was pressed to comment further on the New Republic article by AP, whose reporter asked, "How do you respond this this question whether you're gay enough?"
Buttigieg said, "You know, there's not gonna be an answer for everybody. The best way I've found to deal with that is to just be myself and let other people worry about whether it's enough."