Pete Buttigieg of South Bend, Indiana is no longer mayor of the mid-size midwestern city after his second term expired on Dec. 31st.
Buttigieg, who is leading in the Iowa Democratic presidential polls just one month away from the first-in-the-nation caucus, served as mayor of South Bend for eight years after being first elected at the young age of 29 in 2011. On Wednesday, “Mayor Pete” officially became “former Mayor.”
Now 37 turning 38 on Jan. 19, Buttigieg is in the midst of the biggest battle of his political career chasing the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination. Buttigieg’s performance in the race has shocked political observers as he now leads in Iowa and polls in a close second in the New Hampshire according to Real Clear Politics’ latest aggregate of polls.
Since jumping in crowded contest a year ago, Buttigieg has outperformed rivals boasting higher government credentials including senators and governors by consistently polling among the top ten candidates. With standout performances in last year’s six primary debates, Buttigieg raked in $76 million for his campaign war-chest since the start of his campaign, more than $25 million of which came in from the last quarter.
In last month’s debate, Buttigieg found himself the center of criticism from the candidates on stage threatened by the former midwestern mayor’s momentum in the early contest states. The Indiana native held his own however from candidates such as Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren who attacked the former mayor for holding fundraisers with high-dollar donors. Buttigieg articulated the progressive senator’s double-standard by pointing to her own wealth and history of funding her multiple campaigns, including her current presidential effort with the same tactics.
While running South Bend, Buttigieg also continued his service as a naval intelligence officer in the United States Navy Reserve until 2017. In 2014, Buttigieg took a leave from his mayoral duties to serve on a tour to Afghanistan.
Prior to his time in public service, Buttigieg studied as a Rhodes Scholar and worked as a consultant for McKinsey & Company.
Buttigieg’s mayoral chief of staff, James Mueller is now the mayor of South Bend.