Chasten Buttigieg makes the glaringly obvious point about Mike Pence’s lunch with gay Irish leader

Chasten Buttigieg (left) talking at the DNC LGBTQ Gala in New York City and Mike Pence at a press conference in Ireland (Drew AngererPool/Getty Images)

After a White House aid argued Vice President Mike Pence couldn’t be anti-gay because he was having lunch with Ireland’s gay prime minsiter, Chasten Buttigieg, the husband of 2020 presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg, had some thoughts.

Judd Deere, the White House deputy press secretary and a special assistant to US President Donald Trump, said that as Pence was lunching with Taoiseach Leo Varadkar, he simply could not be “anti-gay.”

This clearly gave Buttigieg food for thought, who hit back at Deere’s attempt at minimising the Pence’s homophobic track record.

Chasten Buttigieg: Dining with a gay man doesn’t mean you’re less homophobic

“I’ve sat at tables with people who would gladly deny me the right to marry, who openly support conversion therapy, and who adamantly believe being gay is a choice,” Chasten Buttigieg tweeted Monday.

“Doesn’t mean they’re any less homophobic because we shared a meal.”

“This may be the dumbest tweet out of an already incredibly pathetic comms office.”

Buttigieg, a teacher, has been married to Pete, the mayor of South Bend, Indiana, since 2018. The pair are popularly known to have met on the dating app Hinge.

He rebutted the White house deputy press secretary after Deere shared a screenshot of the Pence’s schedule for the day.

Deere tweeted: “For all of you who still think our VP is anti-gay, I point you to his and the Second Lady’s schedule tomorrow where they will join Taoiseach Leo Varadkar and his partner Dr. Matthew Barrett for lunch in Ireland.”

The gay Republican often represents Trump on LGBT+ issues. He said in a 1 July interview with BuzzFeed that the president “doesn’t treat me any differently because I’m gay”.

But he added that the president may not actually know how he identifies.

Responding to Deere’s tweet, one Twitter user said: “This may be the dumbest tweet out of an already incredibly pathetic comms office.”

Pence flew into Ireland on 2 September – his first official visit to the country as vice president – and was immediately condemned by LGBT+ activists and human-rights campaigners.

The three-day trip will include official and private meetings in a packed schedule for the vide president.