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Klobuchar hits back at Buttigieg criticism: ‘Are you calling me dumb?’

Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) sharply rebuked former South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete Buttigieg during Wednesday’s Democratic presidential primary debate in a heated exchange over a recent gaffe when she failed to name Mexico’s president.

After Buttigieg hammered her on the issue, pointing to her membership on Senate committees that dealt with trade with Mexico, Klobuchar pointedly asked pointedly if the mayor was questioning her intelligence.

“You’re on the committee that oversees border security, you’re on the committee that does trade. You’re literally a part of the committee that’s overseeing these things and literally were not able to speak to the first thing about the politics of the country to our south,” Buttigieg charged.

“Are you trying to say that I’m dumb? Or are you mocking me, here, Pete?” Klobuchar responded.

Buttigieg said she should not “trivialize” that knowledge.

“I made an error,” Klobuchar continued. “People sometimes forget names.”

“I am the one that has … the experience based on passing over 100 bills,” she added, before a moderator attempted to cut her off. “If I could respond … he’s basically saying that I don’t have the experience to be president of the United States.”

“I am the one, not you,” Klobuchar continued, pointing to Buttigieg, “that has won statewide, in congressional district after congressional district.”

The clash between the two moderates was one of the most heated moments of the night, with Klobuchar appearing to be offended by Buttigieg’s suggestion that she did not have any knowledge of U.S.-Mexico policy.

The moment stemmed from an interview Klobuchar gave over the weekend to Telemundo ahead of the Nevada caucuses, where a significant Latino voting population is in play.

She later gave an interview in which she named Mexico’s president correctly, though she mispronounced his first name.

Tags Amy Klobuchar Pete Buttigieg

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