Vice President Mike Pence was the governor of Indiana in 2015 when Pete Buttigieg decided to come out as gay during his re-election bid for mayor of South Bend in that state. Now that he is exploring a race to unseat President Donald Trump in 2020, he had a message for Pence on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert Thursday night.
Asked by Colbert what it was like to work with Pence during those years, Buttigieg replied, “He’s nice. If he were here, you would think he is a nice guy to your face, but he’s also just fanatical.”
“He really believes, I mean he’s written that cigarettes don’t kill and he seems to think that the universe was created a few thousand years ago and that people like me get up in the morning and decide to be gay,” Buttigieg said. “And the thing about it is, if that was a choice, it was a choice that was made way above my pay grade. So what he doesn’t realize is that his quarrel is with my creator. My marriage has moved me closer to God and I wish he respected that.”
Earlier in the interview, Colbert told his guest that what he really likes about America right now is that Buttigieg’s sexual orientation is the “third thing” he learned about him. “That’s no longer the banner headline for someone who wants to run for public office,” he said. “Do you see yourself as a trailblazer in this way?”
“On the one hand, I’m very conscious of the historic nature of a candidacy like that,” he replied. “And I hope if nothing else it makes it easier for the next person who comes along. But I think we need to work toward a world where it’s not newsworthy at all.”