Theories About Why Young Progressives Hate Pete Buttigieg So So Very Much

Buttigieg, far more than Biden, has the youth and vigor to command the party for the next generation. And this makes him the graver threat to those arguing for a socialist revolution.

…He initially proposed radical government reforms such as packing the Supreme Court and removing the filibuster, but now he’s recast himself as a moderate unifier. As a result, the left sees him as not just any moderate, but as a moderate masquerading as a wunderkind grassroots progressive. …For the young left, political moderation might be a misdemeanor; but eloquent moderation donning the costume of progressive activism is first-degree phoniness that merits the punishment of crude criticism.

…[Buttigieg’s] candidacy violates a certain unwritten law of U.S. electoral politics. American voters have historically appreciated candidates who, from a socioeconomic perspective, identify “down”: Franklin D. Roosevelt was a traitor to the upper class; Trump is the real-estate billionaire who speaks for coal miners; Bernie Sanders is the septuagenarian senator who rallies the young left. But there’s not a deep history of successful candidates who appeared to identify “up,” like a young, nonmillionaire, small-town mayor who aligns himself with cosmopolitan capital. Identifying down can be a proxy for authenticity, but identifying up invites accusations of inauthenticity.

…The diverse and angry and hyper-educated Millennial-and-Gen-Z cohort are a rising power on the cusp of a potentially seismic moment in American political history, and their most successful representative is a candidate who, it turns out, doesn’t really represent them.

Why Young Progressives Hate Pete Buttigieg – The Atlantic


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