Tag Archives: veterans

Veteran Maura Sullivan of Obama admin. endorses Pete Buttigieg for President

by Maura Sullivan – Feb 4, 2020 (SeaCoastOnline.com)

Maura Sullivan is a Marine veteran, Portsmouth resident, and a former Obama administration official. The views expressed are those of the writer.

While foreign policy may seem like it occurs an ocean away on another continent, its effects are felt in our communities. Many Granite State families have loved ones proudly serving in our military — including mine. My little brother serves in the Marines and is currently deployed. My fiancé serves in the Navy and will deploy this year.

As our families face these uncertain times, this election, and who we choose as our next President, will directly impact our future. As I consider the crowded Democratic field, I keep returning to one question: Who do I trust most as commander in chief with the lives of my loved ones?

As a senior Pentagon official serving under President Obama, I saw up close how life and death decisions are made in Washington. Good leadership starts at the top with a President who has integrity, will genuinely weigh the facts, understand opposing views, exhaustively consider the consequences of a proposed course of action, and then lead with conviction, courage, and compassion.

So when I think about my fiancé and my little brother being sent into harms’ way, and the President charged with leading them, the answer is quite simple: Pete Buttigieg is the leader I trust with their lives.

I trust Pete because he has personally experienced what it means to be deployed by a commander in chief. So he will never send our young women and men into a war without a plan to win and the resources to succeed– and only after every economic and diplomatic option has been exhausted.

When politicians in Washington sent us into a war we never should have entered, I saw first-hand the effects of their disastrous decision making in 2005 as a Marine in Fallujah, Iraq. We have lost more than 6,700 American lives in Iraq, where I served, and in Afghanistan, where Pete served. Too many of them come from communities in New Hampshire.

If we want to end Washington’s dysfunction, we need to elect a leader who is rooted in the realities of the American people — not politics as usual.

Pete is that leader.

We are in a moment like no other – this election will determine the course of our country and our global community not just for the next four years, but for generations to come. Consider the strategic threats we are running out of time to address. As sea levels rise, our infrastructure crumbles. Health care costs soar as our nation splinters. The stock market climbs as wages stagnate.

But we can change all that. Pete has the vision, intellect, and strategy to turn the page on the chaos and unite our country so we can finally start facing these unprecedented challenges and delivering meaningful results for all of our families.

There are tough days ahead for all of us — but we have faced challenges before, and we have always come together as a community and a nation to overcome them. Let’s not forget what we did just 12 years ago.

The energy I see around our state for Pete reminds me of what I saw in 2008 when I volunteered to knock doors in Manchester for another young inspirational leader from the Midwest with a funny name — Senator Barack Obama. Before the primaries, some questioned his ability to win, but a strong showing in Iowa and New Hampshire changed the narrative. I will never forget watching him accept the Democratic party’s nomination in Denver — and feeling so full of hope and optimism for our country.

As Democrats, we know when we let fear overtake hope in the ballot box, we come up short. But when we dare to follow our hopes and our hearts toward an exciting, young, fresh faced Washington outsider with a vision for a strong today and a better tomorrow — we win. And win this year we must — there’s too much at stake.

So let’s turn the page on all the chaos and division that we’ve come to expect from Washington and restore character and integrity to the White House. Let’s build an economy that works for working and middle class families again. Let’s fix our healthcare system and tackle climate change. Pete represents our best hope to do all that and more. With Pete, we can finally put the failed and dangerous leadership in Washington behind us.

And so, with that same spirit of hope, of belief in a brighter future, and optimism for a greater tomorrow for America that delivered us a victory in 2008, please join me in voting for Pete Buttigieg for President in the New Hampshire Democratic primary on Feb. 11.

Buttigieg Should Be Our Next Commander In Chief

by Steve Warnstadt, former state senator and brigadier general – Jan 10, 2020 (IowaStartingLine.com)

Recent events in the Middle East have one thing crystal clear: our country desperately needs a steady hand as the commander in chief. That’s the main reason I decided to support Pete Buttigieg.

In addition to the foreign policy he has articulated, Buttigieg’s response to recent events has demonstrated the most essential characteristic in a commander in chief: judgment. He knows that a president must have clear objectives, act in ways that meet those objectives, and anticipate consequences before acting.

He has also made clear that the primary responsibility of any commander in chief is to keep Americans safe. As a veteran, he intimately understands that those who wear the uniform bear the consequences of decisions made in comfort from time zones away. He knows what it’s like to trust people with your life, and he won’t send troops into conflict without exhausting other alternatives, or without a clearly defined mission.

I served in the Army (active and National Guard) for 30 years, with assignments ranging from an infantry battalion intelligence officer in Operation Desert Storm to being a senior NATO advisor in Kosovo, before retiring as a brigadier general.

I believe that Pete Buttigieg’s critical thinking, steady demeanor, and judgment all matter. I can also attest that, as he said in a foreign policy address in May, “The world needs the best of America right now.” Whether it is building international action to address the climate crisis, supporting those who seek freedom while credibly deterring the forces of authoritarianism, or overcoming the violent elements of ethnic nationalism and religious extremism, the world needs an America that lives its values.

This is why I didn’t hesitate when I was invited to join more than 200 foreign policy and national security professionals from across the country to publicly endorse Pete Buttigieg for president. They include people like former Secretary of the Army Eric Fanning, former National Security Advisor Anthony Lake, former deputy CIA director David Cohen, former National Security Council deputy legal advisor Tess Bridgeman and former Pentagon spokesman Doug Wilson, among others.

They are experienced men and women from all walks of life and from all parts of the country who have served around the globe, in conflict zones and high risk environments. Men and women who have dedicated their lives to making America and the world better. We have all concluded that Pete Buttigieg best understands the impact of global change, and how to involve us all in shaping strategies that make will make that change work for us and not against us.

We face a situation filled with risk, danger, and uncertainty, but also one of opportunity.

In his commitment to do whatever it takes to keep America safe and secure, in his understanding the importance of long term planning and building coalitions, in his calls to end endless war, and in his response to the call to serve his country in uniform, it’s clear to me and to many others who have also responded to that call that Pete Buttigieg is ready to serve as our commander in chief.

Maryland Congressman Anthony G. Brown endorses Pete Buttigieg for President

After the events of the last few days, it is clear today more than ever that we need a steady and thoughtful Commander-in-Chief rather than the irresponsible, uninformed, self-obsessed, blustering person who currently occupies the Oval Office.

In less than a year, we will have the opportunity to choose that leader who will make us stronger at home and abroad. My choice is Mayor Pete Buttigieg.

Pete has earned my endorsement and now I have a request for you. As we are counting down the days until the Iowa Caucuses, will you consider making a contribution — even just $3 — to support the hard and transformative work of his campaign?

After serving three decades in the Army and Army Reserve and now as Vice Chair of the House Armed Services Committee, I’m acutely aware that the top priority for the President should be the security and safety of our nation — and I look forward to waking up the day after Trump to a Commander-in-Chief like Pete.

To these global challenges, Pete brings his deep intellect and experience, grounded in his time in a war zone. A decade after I landed in a C-130 in Iraq for a one-year military tour of duty, Pete took a leave as mayor and stepped off a C-17 transport in Afghanistan. The lessons he took from that conflict shape his understanding of America’s role in the world and make him uniquely suited for this moment. As a soldier and a citizen, I value Pete’s experience.

As president, Pete will rebuild America’s relationships and credibility with our allies, so that the United States will lead the world in confronting global threats from climate change to rising authoritarianism. He will work to bring wars like the one he served in to a responsible end. He is clear-eyed about the interests and values that motivate our foreign policy and understands that the world needs America’s leadership at its best.

Pete will bring that same leadership to make us stronger here at home. For the past eight years, he has steered a diverse, working-class, industrial city into a brighter, more prosperous future. A mayor knows what it means to get things done, deliver results, and bring people together to turn a community around.

That’s particularly true when it comes to advocating for and empowering communities of color, like the ones I represent in Maryland. Pete made hard-fought progress in South Bend in the African-American community, but he understands that much work remains and there are no easy solutions to ingrained problems.

From serving in Kabul to serving in South Bend, Pete’s life has been about service to others. He listens. He connects. He’s unflappable. Whether he’s sitting down with entrepreneurs in Baltimore or farmers in Iowa, Pete shows a commitment to build trust and deliver for every American. As more Americans get to know Pete, I’m confident they will see the authentic leader we need right now: a president who can bring us together and pick up the pieces.

If you share my belief that Pete is the best candidate in the field to lead our country into a safer, more just, and more unified future, consider making a donation now to ensure his campaign has the resources they need to compete in the crowded Democratic primary field.

Many exceptional friends and leaders have stepped forward, all of whom would be infinitely preferable to Donald Trump. But of all the candidates, I believe Pete Buttigieg is the right one to take on and defeat Trump and, more importantly, to lead us into a better future.

Thank you,

Congressman Anthony G. Brown, MD-04

Pete Buttigieg wins first endorsement from a black member of Congress

by Chelsea Janes – Jan. 9, 2020 (WashingtonPost.com, abridged)

Presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg received his first endorsement from a member of the Congressional Black Caucus on Thursday when former Maryland lieutenant governor Anthony G. Brown announced his support for the outgoing mayor of South Bend, Ind.

“I firmly believe that Pete Buttigieg is the guy to lead our nation after we defeat Donald Trump and have to pick up the pieces and repair the damage of the last four years,” Brown said in an interview. “He’s well-versed and studied and really diligent about the issues from a policy standpoint.”

Brown, 58, is a relatively junior member of the Congressional Black Caucus, having been elected to Congress in 2016. Two years earlier, Brown lost a governor’s race in heavily Democratic Maryland to current Republican Gov. Larry Hogan, in part because of a significant drop-off in Democratic turnout.

Brown acknowledged Buttigieg has received criticism for how he has approached racial issues in South Bend, but he said Buttigieg has not shied away from the critiques.

“We all suffer criticism,” Brown said. “The question is, how well do you take that criticism and sort of transform it into an overall constructive approach to addressing the challenges that are being raised? And I think he is really good at that and is open to it.”

Buttigieg’s campaign plans to deploy Brown on the campaign trail in the coming weeks, much of which the candidate will spend in Iowa during the final push to the Feb. 3 caucuses. That effort also includes new television ads, announced Tuesday, that will be airing in each of the four early primary states.

In an interview, Brown said he paid close attention to the Democratic debates and to Buttigieg’s speeches over the summer. The arguments he heard and things he saw from the candidate impressed him. When the Buttigieg campaign reached out to Brown, he met with the candidate and trailed him during a swing through Iowa in late December.

“When I went out there and I attended a lot of events, my ear was listening to him but my eyes were on the audience,” Brown said. “How are people reacting to this midsized city mayor who is fairly new to the American electorate but is attracting a lot of attention because of his ideas and because of his openness?”

He concluded that Buttigieg is “very, very consistent and connects well to the audience.”

Brown — who represents Maryland’s 4th Congressional District, just outside Washington — has other connections with Buttigieg. Both attended Harvard University and both are military veterans.

Brown served 30 years in the military, including a tour in Iraq, and said Buttigieg’s own service was an important part of his decision. He also defended the 37-year-old candidate against concerns by some voters that he lacks experiences, saying the notions of age and experience “need to be decoupled.”

“He’s got eight years as mayor,” Brown said, noting that he served under Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley, a former Baltimore mayor. “I saw firsthand the important work that mayors do, whether it’s public health, whether it’s public education. It’s just a variety of issues dealing with diverse communities.”

Brown was at … a gathering in Des Moines hosted by the local NAACP chapter and a Des Moines-based group called Urban Dreams. Buttigieg fielded several questions from black voters about his plans and his record on racial justice.

“He didn’t shy away from the fact that South Bend, like Baltimore, like so many cities, have challenges, and that he’s learned a lot in addressing that,” said Brown, adding that his Douglass Plan shows he intends to seriously tackle racial disparities.

The campaign has also sought to put Buttigieg in small-group settings with African American and Latinx leaders in Iowa, Nevada and elsewhere as part of an attempt to build relationships and trust in communities of color.

He’s demonstrated it out there, the ability to pull together a diverse coalition of people to take on these issues,” Brown said. “The issues that he was speaking to when I was in Iowa, the same issues that have come up during debates — these are issues that resonate in all communities across America.”

Pete Buttigieg Picks Up More NH Endorsements

by NH Labor News – Dec 3, 2019 (NHLaborNews.com)

Yesterday, The Chair of the Derry Town Council, Neil Wetherbee, announced his endorsement of Pete Buttigieg for President of the United States. 

Wetherbee is currently serving his third term on the Derry Town Council and is a local business owner. 

“I’m proud to endorse Pete Buttigieg because as a mayor he understands there’s no Democratic way or Republican way to pick up the trash, plow the roads, or put out fires — the only thing that matters is delivering for the people who count on you, a perspective that’s missing from Washington these days,” said Wetherbee. “As the Chair of the Derry Town Council and an independent, I work with Democrats and Republicans. When we disagree, we don’t turn it into a partisan shouting match, we work it out — and as a mayor, that’s Pete’s approach. When our country is so polarized, Pete is bringing people together from across the political spectrum to implement bold solutions that the American people want and are actually achievable.”

Today, Dover Mayor Karen Weston announced her endorsement of Pete Buttigieg, citing his experience leading South Bend and his ability to bring Americans together to address the country’s most urgent challenges. that’s what DMSToday, Dover Mayor Karen Weston announced her endorsement of Pete Buttigieg, citing his experience leading South Bend and his ability to bring Americans together to address the country’s most urgent challenges. 

Weston has served on the Dover City Council for 12 years, and for the past six years has been the city’s mayor.

“I met a lot of presidential candidates this year, but I found Pete the most grounded and the most clear about his vision for the county. Granite Staters are looking for a leader who doesn’t just have bold ideas — but can actually bring the country together to tackle the challenges we face,” said Weston. “Mayors know how to bring people together, balance budgets, solve problems, and serve their communities — and that’s why I’m proud to support Pete. As Mayor, Pete has had to deal with the most urgent issues facing our country — from immigration to health insurance coverage to gun violence. Leading a city has given Pete the foundation, and the granular attention to detail, to be a great president.”

by John DiStaso – Dec 4, 2019 (WMUR.com)

Mayor Pete Buttigieg has been endorsed by retired Maj. Gen. Ken Clark of Stratham, a former Adjutant General of the New Hampshire National Guard and a community service activist.

The Buttigieg campaign shared the key endorsement first with WMUR’s New Hampshire Primary Source before announcing it widely. Clark’s endorsement comes on the same day that a national progressive veterans group, VoteVets PAC, announced its first-ever presidential endorsement, for Buttigieg.

Clark cited Buttigieg’s experience as a military veteran, his national service plan and what Clark said is Buttigieg’s ability to unite the country.

Endorsing Buttigieg, Clark said in a statement:

“The United States was founded on a set of principles that have guided us for close to 250 years. Those principles were captured in our Constitution. As a military officer for over 40 years, I considered my oath to support and defend that Constitution as sacred.

“I have watched the current incumbent of the office of president routinely behave as if that oath can be interpreted any way he chooses. He has caused me to look very closely at those candidates vying for the nomination to oppose him in the 2020 election.

“As a long time independent voter and retiree, I have the time to do lots of research, watch the debates, and discuss with others. I have concluded that Pete Buttigieg is the candidate who best understands that the role of president is not as much about pushing an agenda as it is about building consensus.

“From his time in the military, Pete knows first-hand the power of national service to bring people together from all different walks of life and has released a bold plan to dramatically increase public service in our country.

“As president, Pete will not be controlled by big money, special interests or those that think he owes them favors. He is not making promises that he can’t keep. I am certain that his will be an administration filled with members of diverse backgrounds and viewpoints, who are well qualified for their responsibilities.

“He will be guided by principle and reflection on the oath that he already took as a military officer. He is very smart, an exceptional communicator, willing to listen and able to stand toe to toe with the incumbent. I’m all in for Pete.”

Other voluntary national service advocates who have endorsed Buttigieg include state Rep. Matt Wilhelm, an AmeriCorps alumnus.

This week, Buttigieg has also announced the endorsements of two additional local officials, Mayor Karen Weston of Dover and Derry Town Council Chair Neil Wetherbee.

Buttigieg’s campaign says the candidate has also been endorsed by 10 state representatives, 25 current and former elected officials and Democratic activists, including Rochester City Councilor and Air Force veteran Jeremy Hutchinson and Keene City Councilor Randy Filiault.

Buttigeg’s campaign says it has 13 offices in New Hampshire’s 10 counties and a staff of 66 people.

Clark enlisted in the New Hampshire Air National Guard in 1968. He commanded the 157th Air Refueling Wing from 1996 to 2001. From 2004 until his retirement in 2009, Clark served as adjutant general, the senior Guard officer for New Hampshire, overseeing the Army and Air National Guard as well as the New Hampshire Veteran’s Cemetery. In addition to his

He currently serves on the executive committee of Veterans Count, the philanthropic arm of Easter Seals Military and Veterans Services, which provides support to service members, veterans and their families.

VoteVets PAC endorsement

VoteVets, which says it represents more than 700,000 veterans, has been active in supporting Democrats for key offices. On Wednesday, it issued what it said was its first-ever endorsement of a presidential candidate.

Kate Holt, VoteVets senior adviser and an Iraq War veteran, said: “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. He 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.”

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 (NYTimes.com, 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.”

A spotlight on the people reshaping our politics. A conversation with voters across the country. And a guiding hand through the endless news cycle, telling you what you really need to know.

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

from VoteVets.org

“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.