VoteVets Endorses Pete Buttigieg for President

VoteVets is the first major organization to endorse the mayor of South Bend, Ind., who served in Afghanistan with the Navy.

by Reid J. Epstein – Dec 4, 2019 (, abridged)

VoteVets, the political action committee that backs liberal veterans running for office, has endorsed Pete Buttigieg for president, the first major organization to support the mayor of South Bend, Ind.

The endorsement brings Mr. Buttigieg, a former Navy officer who served in Afghanistan, new defenders in a 2020 Democratic presidential contest that has seen better known candidates drop out as polling shows early-state voters coalescing around the four leading candidates.

Jon Soltz, the co-founder and chairman of VoteVets, said that other campaigns weren’t taking on Mr. Buttigieg directly but that they were using opposition research to try and “hold back his momentum.”

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He added: “They haven’t really been able to do it and now it’s a question of what is Pete’s coalition? We feel it’s important to jump into the breach and let people know that VoteVets is the start of that coalition.”

We feel that he has the most credibility and the most experience to lead our federal government,” Mr. Soltz said of Mr. Buttigieg. “There’s nobody better to end the Afghanistan war than a person who fought in it.”

VoteVets Endorses Mayor Pete Buttigieg for President, In Its First Presidential Endorsement Ever


“Veterans like Pete can win voters in the purple and red areas of the country that other Democrats cannot.”

“Pete is also someone who has the experience, as a war veteran, to be an exemplary Commander in Chief…”

The largest progressive group of veterans in America, VoteVets PAC, representing over 700,000 veterans, military families, and their civilian supporters is today endorsing Afghanistan War veteran and South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg for President of the United States.

“The number one priority has to be beating Donald Trump,” said Jon Soltz, Iraq War Veteran and Chairman of VoteVets. “If Donald Trump wins another term, it is no exaggeration to say this Republic may not survive.  In the 13 years VoteVets has been in existence, we have come to see one thing repeated time after time:  Veterans can win voters in the purple and red areas of the country that other Democrats cannot.  We saw that in 2018 in tough congressional across the country, we saw it two weeks ago in VA state legislative races and in many other places.  We need a candidate who will win. Bar none, Pete gives us the best shot at doing just that. It is time to rally around him, and stop the walking, talking national security threat that is Donald Trump.”  

“Pete is also someone who has the experience, as a war veteran, to be an exemplary Commander in Chief, because he understands and has experienced the unique global security challenges we face right now, and the has the personal understanding of our veterans’ needs.  His executive experience as Mayor, and his proven ability to think outside of the box to revitalize communities is exactly what veterans and all Americans need in a president right now.  We could not be more proud to stand with him, and eagerly await the day when this new generation of American leadership is sworn in,” added Kate Hoit, Iraq War Veteran and Senior Adviser to VoteVets.

Accepting the endorsement, Pete Buttigieg said, “In uniform, I learned that when Americans from different backgrounds are brought together for a common purpose, we form the strongest fighting force in the world. I’m honored to have this endorsement from my fellow veterans as we seek to take on our nation’s most urgent challenges and pick up the pieces and put the country back together after Trump.”

VoteVets announced it would be immediately cutting a maximum donation check to Pete 2020, and would utilize its social media networks and email list to support his campaign’s message.  Further plans to energize veterans and military families across the country will be unveiled as the campaign moves ahead.   

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