Buttigieg defends big-dollar fundraisers: 'I am following' same practices as Obama

Buttigieg defends big-dollar fundraisers: 'I am following' same practices as Obama
© Greg Nash

Democratic presidential candidate Pete ButtigiegPete ButtigiegOn The Money — Presented by Wells Fargo — Pelosi plows full speed ahead on jam-packed agenda Blumenthal calls on Buttigieg to investigate American Airlines-JetBlue partnership LGBT film festival to premiere documentary about Pete Buttigieg MORE on Sunday defended his fundraising practices as the same as those used by former President Obama in the wake of criticism from Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersManchin suggests pausing talks on .5 trillion package until 2022: report Yarmuth and Clyburn suggest .5T package may be slimmed Sanders calls deadly Afghan drone strike 'unacceptable' MORE (I-Vt.), a fellow 2020 White House hopeful. 

"I am following the same fundraising practices that President Obama did and that our leaders have," Buttigieg said on CNN's "state of the Union," adding that he's looking to draw in all available support. 

The former South Bend, Ind. mayor said the funds raised will allow him to win the nomination and build a foundation to take on President TrumpDonald TrumpCapitol fencing starts coming down after 'Justice for J6' rally Netanyahu suggests Biden fell asleep in meeting with Israeli PM Aides try to keep Biden away from unscripted events or long interviews, book claims MORE in November. 

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"I don't define my campaign by whose support we reject," Buttigieg said. 

He also noted that his campaign is funded by more than 2 million contributions that he said average under $40, and highlighted a coalition that he said was built from "the ground up."

"I'm not a billionaire, I haven't been in politics for years and decades. I don't have the advantages of having been a senator," Buttigieg said. 

The former mayor has held big dollar fundraisers, a method of fundraising that has been rejected by Sanders and Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenThe Trojan Horse of protectionism Federal Reserve officials' stock trading sparks ethics review Manchin keeps Washington guessing on what he wants MORE (D-Mass.), the two most progressive Democrats in the field.