Buttigieg 'almost certain' there have been gay presidents

Democratic presidential candidate Pete ButtigiegPeter (Pete) Paul ButtigiegThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by JUUL Labs - House to vote to condemn Trump tweet Fundraising numbers highlight growing divide in 2020 race South Bend police officer resigns after killing of black man MORE said he doesn’t think he would be the first gay president if he is elected to the White House in 2020.

Asked about possible attacks on his sexuality from Republicans, the South Bend, Ind., mayor, who is gay, told “Axios on HBO” that “we've probably had excellent presidents who were gay — we just didn't know which ones.”

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“People will elect the person who will make the best president,” Buttigieg said. “And we have had excellent presidents who have been young. We have had excellent presidents who have been liberal,” adding that some were likely gay as well.

“You believe that we've had a gay commander in chief?” host Mike Allen asked.

“I mean, statistically it's almost certain,” Buttigieg replied.

But the 2020 hopeful said he would not speculate on which former presidents might have been gay.

“My gaydar doesn't even work that well in the present, let alone retroactively,” he said.

If elected, Buttigieg would be the first openly gay U.S. president.

Recent polling data shows that while trailing behind other 2020 Democratic primary candidates — including former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenBiden jokes he's ready for a push-up competition with Trump Biden says his presidency is not 'a third term of Obama' Biden knocks Trump on tweets about 'smart as hell' Ocasio-Cortez MORE, Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersWarren embraces Thiel label: 'Good' Sanders slams decision not to charge officer who killed Eric Garner Cardi B says voters let Bernie Sanders down MORE (I-Vt.) and Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenWarren embraces Thiel label: 'Good' Trump says administration will 'take a look' after Thiel raises concerns about Google, China Thiel calls Warren the most 'dangerous' Democratic candidate MORE (D-Mass.) — Buttigieg has some traction in early voting states such as South Carolina.