Trump: 'I think it's great' seeing Buttigieg onstage with his husband

President TrumpDonald John TrumpNASA exec leading moon mission quits weeks after appointment The Hill's Morning Report — After contentious week, Trump heads for Japan Frustration boils over with Senate's 'legislative graveyard' MORE in a new interview said he thinks "it's great" seeing openly gay Democratic presidential candidate Pete ButtigiegPeter (Pete) Paul ButtigiegButtiegieg backs NFL players' right to protest during anthem: I 'put my life on the line to defend' that 2020 Democrats join striking McDonald's workers Poll: Nearly half of Clinton's former supporters back Biden MORE appearing onstage with his husband, adding that he has "no problem with it whatsoever."

"I think it’s absolutely fine. I do," Trump said when asked about the pair on Fox News's "The Next Revolution with Steve Hilton," in an interview to be aired Sunday. 

When Hilton pressed him further, noting that it can be taken as "a sign of great progress," Trump added, “Yes, I think it’s great. I think that’s something that perhaps some people will have a problem with. I have no problem with it whatsoever. I think it’s good.”

 

 

Trump's comment came after he jabbed at the candidate's difficult-to-pronounce name, articulating it in exaggerated fashion as “Boot, edge, edge.”

Trump's comments to Fox News are markedly different in tone from his previous remarks about Buttigieg. The president mocked the Democrat, who's currently mayor of South Bend, Ind., during a campaign rally in Florida earlier this month, dismissing him as "a young man."

"He’s got a great chance. He’ll be great. He’ll be great representing us against President Xi of China," Trump said, drawing laughs from the audience. "That’ll be great."

The president also referred to Buttigieg in an interview with Politico as Alfred E. Neuman, the mascot of Mad Magazine. Buttigieg responded by saying he "had to Google" the reference.

The Democrat has emerged as one of the surprising success stories in the primary race so far, shooting toward the top of the polls in recent months despite his relatively low profile prior to the start of the campaign. 

He has often addressed his homosexuality, making it a central part of his image along with his Christianity and his position as a political leader in the traditionally more conservative Rust Belt. 

His husband, 29-year-old high school teacher Chasten Buttigieg, has also seen his profile rise, appearing alongside the candidate at public events and building a massive social media following since the campaign kicked into high gear.