Tucker Carlson says Pete Buttigieg ‘lied’ about being gay. His husband Chasten says otherwise

Pete and Chasten Buttigieg, who are husbands, are dressed in suits and ties for an event

Fox News host Tucker Carlson has accused the United States transportation secretary Pete Buttigieg of lying about being gay and his husband has been quick to hit back. 

On Friday (25 November) Pete’s husband, Chasten Buttigieg, called the anchor out for accusing his husband of not explaining why he had previously kept his sexuality private.

“This kind of rhetoric is easy. It’s so easy to attack people and to go on your talk show and fire people up about something that’s not actually happening,” Chasten told CNN.

“I love my husband. 

“I know he’s a committed public servant and he has everyone’s best interests at heart. 

“I just think these people, again with these megaphones — they have to have a big platform and rather than focusing on real issues, people’s lives, making them better, they’ve decided to focus on hate,” he added. 

It follows Carlson’s segment on Fox News on Wednesday (23 November) where he accused Pete of always wanting “to talk about identity”. 

“And the funny, ironic thing is, until just a few years ago, Pete Buttigieg wouldn’t even admit he was gay. 

“He hid that and then lied about it for reasons he has never been asked to explain. Why not?”, Carlson said. 

However, Pete has explained on many occasions why he didn’t come out during his early career as a civil servant. 

In 2015, during his time as the mayor of South Bend, Pete spoke to the South Bend Tribune and explained he was “well into adulthood before I was prepared to acknowledge the simple fact that I am gay”.

He said “it took years of struggle and growth for me to recognize that it’s just a fact of life”, but noted “being more open about it could do some good”. 

In other settings, such as in 2020 when he mounted his bid for the White House with the Democratic Party, he explained the “fear” of being able to be open about his sexuality in the state of Indiana where Mike Pence was governor. 

He has also publicly acknowledged the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy ban on gay service members, which still in effect when he served in the military from 2009 to 2017 as an intelligence office in the US Navy Reserve. 

Carlson’s rant came just days after the devastating Colorado Springs shooting on 19 November, which saw five people killed. 

Two days after the attack Pete condemned the mass shooting and political discourse that attacks the LGBTQ+ community. 

He told CBS News: “It was a place of belonging, it was a place of community. And it came under attack – at a time when the entire LGBTQ community is coming under attack. 

“And if anybody claims to be surprised that political attacks on a community that doesn’t hurt anybody are sometimes followed by violent physical attacks on that same community, I just don’t think they’re being honest.”

Carlson has attempted to swipe at the transportation secretary before, and in 2021 he mocked Pete, who had recently become a father to baby twins for “trying to figure out how to breastfeed”.

Pete was quick to hit back at Carlson saying the Fox News host clearly “doesn’t understand the concept of bottle feeding”.