Former South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete ButtigiegPete ButtigiegThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Congress avoids shutdown Harris's office undergoes difficult reset The Hill's 12:30 Report: Biden to announce increased measures for omicron MORE was asked in his Dec. 11 interview with The New York Times editorial board how he is countering the "Mayo Pete" memes, which make fun of the Democratic presidential candidate for being bland.
Buttigieg initially said he wasn't familiar with the memes when asked directly about them.
"Do I want to know?" he asked New York Times opinion editor Aisha Harris in the interview.
After a brief discussion in which Harris and others explain that the meme refers to Buttigieg's whiteness or blandness, Buttigieg said, "I get the white part."
The memes feature supporters of the former mayor dancing to Panic! at the Disco's "High Hopes."
“dancing” to “high hopes” for establishment centrist Pete Buttigieg? the clownery pic.twitter.com/U2LdO9Qxjg— Baxter (@baxfortulsi) November 18, 2019
Buttigieg later argued that there is nothing bland about some of his proposals.
"I mean I’m talking to them about the biggest reform in the American health care system we’ve had since Medicare was invented," he told the editorial board. "I’m talking about a game-changing transformation on the availability of funds to go to college. I’m talking about getting our climate carbon neutral by 2050."
The conversation grew heated when one member of the editorial board, Binyamin Appelbaum, criticized McKinsey, the consulting firm where Buttigieg once worked. Appelbaum said Buttigieg had been on the "front lines" of corporate downsizing and and corporate price fixing.
Buttigieg said it was "bullshit" that he had been on the front lines of corporate price fixing.
"I worked for a consulting company that had a client that may have been involved in fixing or was apparently in a scandal," he said. "I was not aware of the Canadian bread pricing scandal until last night."