Clash of color?

WATCH: Pete Buttigieg asked whether black voters are too antigay to vote for him

Pete Buttigieg, Meet the Press, Chuck Todd, black homophobia
Pete Buttigieg on “Meet the Press” discussing black homophobia.

In an interview with Meet the Press host Chuck Todd yesterday, Todd asked Pete Buttigieg whether he thought African Americans would vote for him despite his being gay.

Todd read a quote from the Reverend Rodric Reid, a black pastor at the Uplift Church in Indianapolis. Reid said of Buttigieg’s homosexuality:

“I guarantee it’s going to be an obstacle for the candidate from South Bend. That is really still a touchy subject, specifically and especially in the African American church. Now, I think it could be overcome, because we are gradually getting to a point of, and I don’t want to say ‘accept,’ but we are getting to a point of realizing this is the culture that we are going to have to begin to live with and adapt to it.”

Tood asked Buttigieg, “I know you’re trying to have these conversations with a lot of African Americans. How are they going?”

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Buttigieg then responded:

“They’re going well, and we are working very hard to engage people across the party, but especially black voters, who expect you to demonstrate, especially when you’re new on the scene, what your values are and how you’re going to promote policies that lift them up. I also think we have a moment on our hands when we can do the exact opposite of what the president has done.”

“The president has used identity as a wedge, used race as a wedge to divide people who have common interests. I think we have an opportunity to reach into our own distinctive identities and use them to build bridges, to reach out to people different from us, knowing that anybody who has been on the short end of an equation of exclusion has a way to sympathize with people who’ve had different experiences with exclusion in this country.”

“And if we build a solidarity around that, then people who have, for whatever reason, felt a lack of belonging or felt exclusion or felt discrimination in this country, even though those patterns of discrimination are very, very different, when all of us come together, we win, and we are all better off.”

When Todd followed up by asking how Buttigieg would respond to voters who are unsure whether to support him as an out-gay candidate, Buttigieg said, “I’d invite them to look at what happened in South Bend. I have every confidence that American voters, especially Democratic voters, will not discriminate when the opportunity comes up to choose the right leader for the future.”

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