Amy Klobuchar Claims Pete Buttigieg's Popularity Highlights Sexism, Says a Woman With His Experience Wouldn't Have a Chance

Senator Amy Klobuchar this weekend fired a shot at fellow Democratic 2020 presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg, the mayor of South Bend, Indiana, over his lack of experience.

In an article on Saturday, the New York Times revealed that Klobuchar had suggested in June that female candidates with Buttigieg's experience would not have be taken seriously. When asked about the South Bend mayor's experience, she said: "Could we be running with less experience than we had? I don't think so. I don't think people would take us seriously."

During an appearance on CNN's State of the Union on Sunday, Klobuchar, who's on her third term in the Senate, said that all 2020 Democratic candidates are more qualified than Republican President Donald Trump for office, before then doubling down on her attack on Buttigieg by arguing that he would not have had made the debate stage if he were a woman.

"The last point I made in that article was that, of the women on the stage, I'm focusing here on my fellow women senators, Sens. Harris and Warren and myself, do I think we would be standing on that stage if we had the experience that he had? No, I don't," Klobuchar said. "Maybe we're held to a different standard."

“Of the women on the stage… do I think we would be standing on that stage if we had the experience that [Mayor Pete Buttigieg] had? No, I don’t. Maybe we’re held to a different standard.” - Sen. Amy Klobuchar on Mayor Buttigieg’s qualifications #CNNSOTU

— CNN Politics (@CNNPolitics) November 10, 2019

Klobuchar has positioned herself in the crowded Democratic primary field to be an alternative moderate candidate to former Vice President Joe Biden, the front-runner according to most recent polls. Buttigieg has similarly also cast himself as a pragmatic alternative to Biden and progressive front-runners, Senators Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders, and is currently polling higher than the Minnesota Democrat.

Klobuchar on Sunday went on to tell CNN host Jake Tapper that she is more qualified than Buttigieg because unlike him, she has "actually won in a statewide race."

"I'm the one from the Midwest that's actually won in a statewide race over and over again," she said. "Those are the kind of voters I've won and that's not true of Mayor Pete."

Newsweek reached out to Buttigieg's campaign for comment, but did not receive a response in time for publication.

According to a Washington Post-ABC News poll, released last week, Klobuchar pulled in 2 percent of votes compared to Buttigieg's roughly 9 percent. However, both candidates trail significantly behind front-runners Biden, Sanders and Warren.

Klobuchar went on to criticize former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg for potentially entering the already-crowded 2020 race. "I certainly welcome Mayor Bloomberg to the race. He's done incredible work on gun safety, on environmental issues. And it is work of merit," she told Tapper. "But I don't think you just waltz in and say, instead of 'I'm good enough to be president,' your argument is the other people aren't good enough—that is not how we've been conducting these debates."

Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN)attends during a full committee hearing on "Aviation Safety and the Future of Boeing's 737 MAX" on Capitol Hill October 29, 2019 in Washington,DC. Mandel Ngan/Getty