Pete Buttigieg tells his emotional coming out story in ‘historic’ moment

Democratic presidential candidate and South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg

In a “historic” moment, Pete Buttigieg revealed his coming out story during his closing remarks at the third US Democratic debate on Thursday (September 12).

At the end of the debate, candidates were asked to describe a time of resilience in their lives and Buttigieg chose to tell his coming out story.

He said: “As a military officer serving under ‘don’t ask, don’t tell’, and as an elected official in the state of Indiana when Mike Pence was governor, at a certain point, when it came to professional setbacks, I had to wonder whether just acknowledging who I was was going to be the ultimate career-ending professional setback.

“I came back from the deployment and realised you only get to live one life. I was not interested in not knowing what it was like to be in love any longer. So I just came out.

“I had no idea what kind of professional setback it would be, especially because inconveniently, it was an election year in my socially conservative community.

“What happened was that when I trusted voters to judge me based on the job that I did for them, they decided to trust me, and re-elected me with 80 percent of the vote.

“What I learned was that trust can be reciprocated and that part of how you can win, and deserve to win, is to know what’s worth more to you than winning. And I think that’s what we need in the presidency right now.”

Social media users have been calling the moment “historic” and saying it shows how much has been achieved when it comes to LGBT+ rights.

One wrote: “Pete Buttigieg talking about his coming out as a gay man on the Democratic debate stage for president of the United States is a historic moment for all minorities. This would have been unfathomable just a few years ago.”

Pete Buttigieg telling his coming out story on a presidential debate stage is – and I cannot stress this enough – SO IMPORTANT to every kid watching the #DemDebate,” said another.

“Historic, beautiful, a moment that can only be brought to you by Democratic politics.”