Buttigieg responds to Trump insult with Chinese proverb

South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete ButtigiegPeter (Pete) Paul ButtigiegThe Hill's Morning Report - House prosecutes Trump as 'lawless,' 'corrupt' Sanders wants one-on-one fight with Biden Overnight Defense: Trump downplays troops' concussion injuries in Iran attack | Dems offer case against Trump on day two of trial | UN links Saudis to hack of Bezos' phone MORE (D) responded with a Chinese proverb Thursday after President TrumpDonald John TrumpMnuchin knocks Greta Thunberg's activism: Study economics and then 'come back' to us The Hill's Morning Report - House prosecutes Trump as 'lawless,' 'corrupt' What to watch for on Day 3 of Senate impeachment trial MORE mocked his presidential campaign at a rally the night before.

Asked to comment at a press conference after Trump mocked Buttigieg's chances of winning the Democratic nomination, the mayor quoted a proverb while saying that he wasn't "too worried" about the president's insults.

"You can't get too worried about the name calling and the games he plays," said Buttigieg, one of more than 20 Democrats seeking the party's 2020 White House nomination. "I was thinking of a Chinese proverb that goes, when the wind changes, some people build walls and some people build windmills."

"You gotta recognize that we need something that is completely different from what is in this White House," Buttigieg continued. "The negotiations that they are conducting, whether it's on trade or things like North Korea, are usually a personal high-wire act with no safety net."

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On Wednesday, Trump made his first public comments about the 37-year-old presidential hopeful, who is currently polling in third place in multiple surveys, behind former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenThe Hill's Morning Report - House prosecutes Trump as 'lawless,' 'corrupt' What to watch for on Day 3 of Senate impeachment trial Sanders wants one-on-one fight with Biden MORE and Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersThe Hill's Morning Report - House prosecutes Trump as 'lawless,' 'corrupt' Tensions between McConnell and Schumer run high as trial gains momentum Sanders wants one-on-one fight with Biden MORE (I-Vt.).

"We have a young man, Buttigieg," Trump said in Florida, while mocking the pronunciation of the mayor's last name: "Boot-edge-edge. They say 'edge-edge.'"

"He’s got a great chance. He’ll be great. He’ll be great representing us against President Xi of China," he added, to laughs from audience. "That’ll be great."

Buttigieg has previously feuded with the White House over Vice President Pence's views on homosexuality. Pence, a conservative Christian, has responded dismissively to the criticism, while maintaining that he supported Buttigieg when the mayor came out in 2015.