Mayor Pete Buttigieg: identity politics distracts

Dulles brothers-CIA-Wall Street law firm Sullivan and Cromwell a major donor

Sullivan and Cromwell, one of Wall Street's main law firms, is a major donor to the Buttigieg campaign.

John Foster Dulles, Eisenhower's Secretary of State, and his brother Allen Dulles, Eisenhower's Director of Central Intelligence, were longtime key members of Sullivan and Cromwell. Allen Dulles was fired by President Kennedy and then was partly in charge of the Warren Commission which allegedly investigated JFK's removal from office by CIA and the military. In most murder investigations, it is considered a conflict of interest if the inquiry is conducted by a bitter foe of the deceased, but the media and political class never suggested this was improper. (The best guide to understand Allen Dulles is David Talbot's comprehensive book "The Devil's Chessboard: Allen Dulles, the CIA, and the Rise of America's Secret Government.")

Whether Mr. Buttigieg has direct connections to CIA or not, Sullivan and Cromwell donating to his Presidential campaign suggests he is a leading choice for the Agency's quiet endorsement.

These financial connections matter more than ethnicity, sex, sexual orientation, age (compared with other candidates) or the ability to give good speeches.

Buttigieg omitted high-powered bundlers from disclosure
The financial supporters not named by the campaign include former ambassadors and wealthy investors.

12/17/2019 07:17 PM EST

Pete Buttigieg's presidential campaign omitted more than 20 high-level fundraisers from a list of top bundlers it disclosed last week.

The public list of bundlers, featuring more than 100 people who have raised at least $25,000 for Buttigieg, was meant to bring a close to more than a week of feuding between Buttigieg and Elizabeth Warren over campaign transparency. But the list left off a number of people the Buttigieg campaign had previously touted as top donors in an internal campaign fundraising report obtained by POLITICO.

.... While Buttigieg published a list of bundlers on his website last week, the campaign privately circulated the names of people in its "Investors Circle" — fundraisers who had raised at least $25,000 — in a finance update this summer. The 20 people and couples on that document who weren't on Buttigieg's public bundler list last week are: Andrew Tobias of New York; Barbara and Rodge Cohen of Irvington, N.Y.; David Winter of New York; Didem Nisanci of Washington; Eli Cohen of Chevy Chase, Md.; Eric Schieber of Chicago; Freddy Balsera of Miami; Genevieve and Robert Lynch of New York; Hamilton South of Cornwall, Conn.; Jack Connors of Boston; John Petry of New York; John Phillips of Washington; Jordan Horowitz of Los Angeles; Kelly Bavor of Atherton, Calif.; Kyle Keyser of Atlanta; Nicole Avant of Los Angeles; Stephen Patton of Chicago; Ted Dintersmith of Charleston, S.C.; Tom Gearen of Chicago; and William Rahm of New York. ....

Buttigieg, who like other candidates is racing to bank millions of dollars to spend on television and field staff in Iowa and other early voting states, has continued hitting high-dollar fundraisers at breakneck speed between his campaign stops. On Monday morning, the families of several of Silicon Valley's biggest executives — including spouses and relatives of Netflix CEO Reed Hastings, Google co-founder Sergey Brin, former Google CEO Eric Schmidt and Facebook Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg — assembled in Palo Alto, Calif., for an event supporting Buttigieg.


note: H. Rodgin Cohen is senior chairman of Sullivan and Cromwell.

December 30, 2019
The spooks' choice: Coup plotters and CIA agents fill Pete Buttigieg's list of national security endorsers
Why are so many intelligence veterans throwing their weight behind a young Indiana mayor with such a thin foreign policy resume?

By Samuel D. Finkelstein

Buttigieg's new roster of endorsements from former high-ranking CIA officials, regime-change architects, and global financiers should raise more questions about the real forces propelling his campaign. ...

Mayor Pete has effectively positioned himself as a Trojan Horse for the establishment, offering "generational change" that doesn't challenge existing power structures in any concrete way. ....

Buttigieg's lengthy roster of endorsements is loaded with former intelligence operatives, national security hardliners, regime-change specialists, and vulture capitalists. ....

Obscure presidential candidates don't typically garner hundreds of elite national security endorsements before a single vote is cast. So what do these spooks and vulture capitalists see in Mayor Pete?

It can't be Buttigieg's foreign policy resume, because he doesn't have one. He hasn't proposed any notable policies to distinguish himself from the other corporate-friendly candidates, so that can't be it either. Some have posited that Mayor Pete may be a CIA asset himself, but the supporting evidence is circumstantial at best.

Perhaps the most reasonable conclusion is that they see Buttigieg as an empty vessel. Opportunistic and unmoored by ideology or political goals beyond his advancing his career, Buttigieg is the ideal candidate for those who seek to maintain existing hierarchies. Indeed, his national security endorsement list is filled with people who keep America's imperial machine humming along smoothly.

The insider: How national security mandarins groomed Pete Buttigieg and managed his future
By Max Blumenthal, December 17, 2019

Pledging to "end endless wars," Pete Buttigieg claims he has "never been part of the Washington establishment." But years before he was known as Mayor Pete, an influential DC network of military interventionists placed him on an inside track to power.


All About Pete

If you know only one thing about Pete Buttigieg, it's that he's The Small-Town Mayor Who Is Making A Splash. If you know half a dozen things about Pete Buttigieg, it's that he's also young, gay, a Rhodes Scholar, an Arabic-speaking polyglot, and an Afghanistan veteran. If you know anything more than that about Pete Buttigieg, you probably live in South Bend, Indiana. This is a little strange: These are all facts about him, but they don't tell us much about what he believes or what he advocates. The nationwide attention to Buttigieg seems more to be due to "the fact that he is a highly-credentialed Rust Belt mayor" rather than "what he has actually said and done." He's a gay millennial from Indiana, yes. But should he be President of the United States?

... But it's not fair to fully judge a person by a single comment in an interview. Pete Buttigieg has just published a campaign book, Shortest Way Home: One Mayor's Challenge and a Model for America's Future, that gives a much fuller insight into the way he thinks about himself, his ideals, and his plans. It has been called the "best political autobiography since Barack Obama," revealing Buttigieg as a "president in waiting." Indeed, I recommend that anyone considering supporting Buttigieg read it from from cover to cover. It is very personal, very well-written, and lays out a narrative that makes Buttigieg seem a natural and qualified candidate for the presidency.

It also provides irrefutable evidence that no serious progressive should want Pete Buttigieg anywhere near national public office.

Buttigieg's top fundraisers include McKinsey partner, Wall Street execs