Charlamagne Tha God Grills Pete Buttigieg on Weak Poll Numbers, Getting ‘Lost’ in Debates


Power 105.1’s The Breakfast Club co-host Charlamagne Tha God on Friday pressed 2020 presidential candidate and South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg on his poor polling numbers and debate performances.

A partial transcript is as follows: 

CO-HOST CHARLAMAGNE THA GOD: You have a lot more money in your treasure chest since the first time you came. How much have you raised so far?

MAYOR PETE BUTTIGIEG: Last quarter, I think we did $23 million, something like that.

CHARLAMAGNE THA GOD: That’s a lot of money. But, it doesn’t reflect in the polls, the percentages of people who would vote for you.

MAYOR PETE BUTTIGIEG: That’s right. It’s going to take a while to lock people down, right? We’ve overtaken about 20 of my competitors and now we have the bigger hills to climb, but we’ve positioned ourselves in the top tier. Look, a lot people won’t make up their minds until the last five or ten days. But, the window between now and then is when you’re doing the ground game, the organizing. We’re opening 20 offices in 20 days in Iowa, doing about a dozen in New Hampshire in the next few days. That’s what the money is for. That, and you have to get the word out on T.V. and the rest of it. We’re still raising funds, but now it’s about actually putting into the ground and making it work.

CHARLAMAGNE THA GOD: I was reading an article in The Economist and they feel like you’re losing momentum. Do you feel like that?

MAYOR PETE BUTTIGIEG: Nah, I think we’re alright. When we came in, we went from zero to where we are now at warp speed. When we started in January, I have to double-check if this is year, but I’m pretty sure it’s true, I had fewer followers online than our dogs have now. We had four people on the staff. We had a campaign operation the size of a state legislative race somewhere.


CHARLAMAGNE THA GOD: You think you sucked in the first couple of debates?

MAYOR PETE BUTTIGIEG: No, I thought we were good. Do you?

CHARLAMAGNE THA GOD: You kind of got lost, Mayor Pete. I like you because you’re charismatic, but I didn’t really get that from the first couple of debates.

MAYOR PETE BUTTIGIEG: Well, part of the debate format is you giving 60-second answers, their’s ten of you up there and it’s hard to have a meaningful conversation like we can have in the town halls. Town halls are good for us and interviews are good for us, we can dig into things with some depth. That’s harder to do in the debates, where the pressure is to get out there and knife each other. On some level, that’s what I think the networks want you to do.


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