NEW YORK (AP) — The largest political action committee dedicated to electing LGBTQ candidates endorsed Democrat Pete Buttigieg for president on Friday, saying he’s “redefining what is possible in American politics” and is the best person to defeat President Donald Trump.
LGBTQ Victory Fund President Annise Parker joined the 37-year-old gay mayor of South Bend, Indiana, during a World Pride campaign event in Brooklyn to make what she described as a “historic” announcement.
The endorsement is Buttigieg’s first from a national organization and will provide a financial boost heading into Sunday’s second quarter fundraising deadline. The group gave $2 million to candidates in 2018.
“Mayor Pete’s executive experience, record of military service, and authentic approach to politics and policy makes him the best candidate to defeat Donald Trump at the ballot box,” Parker said. “He is the anti-Trump: experienced, accomplished, patriotic and thoughtful. We see the path to victory for Mayor Pete and are ready to mobilize our network of LGBTQ people and allies to help make it happen.”
Buttigieg, who officially joined the 2020 presidential race in April, has some ground to make up ahead of the Sunday deadline for fundraising for the crucial second quarter. That figure will be scrutinized for all candidates as a sign of their campaign’s strength.
He chose to leave the campaign trail earlier this month to return home and deal with the fatal shooting of a black man by a white South Bend police officer. He had to cancel several high-dollar fundraising events in California and a separate New York fundraising trip. He also canceled fundraisers scheduled for this weekend in New York, choosing to return to South Bend on Friday night.
Buttigieg raised $7 million in the first quarter , a number that topped many of his rivals and helped secure his spot in the top tier of the crowded 2020 field .
Friday’s event coincides with the 50th anniversary of the police raid on the Stonewall Inn, an underground gay bar. The raid sparked a rebellion that led to the modern LGBTQ movement.
This story has been corrected to show other New York fundraising events were canceled.