Buttigieg says differences between Biden and Trump are 'almost punching us in the face'

Former Democratic presidential candidate Pete ButtigiegPete ButtigiegSunday shows preview: Delta concerns prompt CDC mask update; bipartisan infrastructure bill to face challenges in Senate Chasten Buttigieg: DC 'almost unaffordable' JD Vance takes aim at culture wars, childless politicians MORE said Sunday that the differences between Democratic presidential nominee Joe BidenJoe BidenThe Supreme Court and blind partisanship ended the illusion of independent agencies Missed debt ceiling deadline kicks off high-stakes fight Senate infrastructure talks spill over into rare Sunday session MORE and President TrumpDonald TrumpTrump PACs brought in over M for the first half of 2021 Chicago owes Trump M tax refund, state's attorney mounts legal challenge Biden hits resistance from unions on vaccine requirement MORE are so stark that they are "almost punching us in the face.”

The former South Bend, Ind. mayor told NBC News’s “Meet the Press” that Biden and Trump differ not on “how,” but “whether” the U.S. will try to combat climate change or provide health care to all Americans.

Buttigieg also hit Trump on his previous comments that COVID-19 would disappear and highlighted Biden, who he said “believes that questions of science and medicine ought to be settled by taking the advice of scientists and doctors.”

“On every major issue, the difference is so stark, it’s almost punching us in the face,” he added. 

When moderator Chuck ToddCharles (Chuck) David ToddChuck Todd is dead wrong: Liberal bias defines modern journalism The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Officers recount the horror of Jan. 6 NFL Network's Rich Eisen says he has COVID-19 despite being vaccinated MORE asked about the Democratic Party not issuing “more detailed policy prescriptions,” Buttigieg said the policies are “abundantly clear” and available on Biden’s website. 

“This is not just a question of what the federal government is going to do,” he said. “This is a question of who Americans are, what America is. And if you believe that America should be and is defined by democracy, if you believe that America has to be a country that makes room for everybody, the choice couldn’t be clearer.”

The former mayor also blamed White House’s “inaction” for the economy being in “such precarious shape,” predicting it will likely get worse “as we go into the fall.”

“So if they want a battle on the economy, let's have that battle,” he said. “But let's also remember that our democracy, our national character and our ability to fight a deadly pandemic are all on the line.”

Buttigieg endorsed Biden after suspending his campaign following the former vice president’s win in the South Carolina primary. His and Sen. Amy KlobucharAmy KlobucharHillicon Valley: Democrats urge tech CEOs to combat Spanish disinformation | Amazon fined 6M by EU regulators Democrats urge tech CEOs to combat Spanish disinformation Bill would honor Ginsburg, O'Connor with statues at Capitol MORE’s (D-Minn.) campaign suspensions allowed Biden to dominate in the Super Tuesday primaries.