WASHINGTON (AP) — Democratic presidential contender Pete Buttigieg (BOO’-tuh-juhj) has blasted Vice President Mike Pence’s cultural and religious conservatism.
But as the mayor of South Bend, Indiana, Buttigieg’s tone toward the state’s Republican former governor was more muted.
The two once had a cordial relationship. Buttigieg presented Pence with a South Bend promotional T-shirt. And at ceremonial events, Pence would lavish Buttigieg with praise.
Their interactions are now under scrutiny as Buttigieg’s campaign has become a surprise hit.
As the openly gay mayor became a celebrated voice for LGBT equality, his rhetoric toward Pence has hardened.
Buttigieg has called Pence’s religious conservatism a “fanatical” ideology. But Pence says Buttigieg “knows better.”