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Buttigieg: We 'probably are' on cusp of recession

Democratic presidential candidate Pete ButtigiegPete ButtigiegJuan Williams: Clyburn is my choice as politician of the year 'Biff is president': Michael J. Fox says Trump has played on 'every worst instinct in mankind' Buttigieg: Denying Biden intelligence briefings is about protecting Trump's 'ego' MORE said on Sunday that the U.S. is "probably" on the cusp of a recession. 

"We've got an economy not working for most Americans," the South Bend, Ind. mayor said on CNN's "State of the Union."

Buttigieg acknowledged the debate going on around a potential recession, and said that "we probably are" heading toward an economic downturn.

But the bigger problem, he said, is that, even during times of economic expansion, "most Americans can't get ahead."

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"And the president had made it abundantly clear he doesn't care," Buttigieg said. 

For President TrumpDonald John TrumpBiden says GOP senators have called to congratulate him Biden: Trump attending inauguration is 'of consequence' to the country Biden says family will avoid business conflicts MORE, rural America is "just the scenery he sees" on the way to a golf course, Buttigieg added. 

The Democrat also pushed back on the Trump administration's tariffs on China. 

"Besides all the noise...American farmers are getting killed," he said, in reference to White House trade adviser Peter Navarro, who appeared earlier on CNN and said the tariffs are only hurting China. 

"[Farmers] are now asking the question 'how much longer are we supposed to take one for the team?'" Buttigieg said. 

Buttigieg said Trump has repeatedly said he is on the cusp of a deal with China and failed, and the Democrat expects more failures from the president. 

"There is clearly no strategy for dealing with the trade war in a way that will actually lead to results for American farmers or consumers," Buttigieg said.