Democratic presidential hopeful Pete Buttigieg calmly shut down anti-gay hecklers at two Iowa campaign events on Tuesday, according to reports.
In his first visit to the state since he officially declared his 2020 candidacy, Buttigieg, an observant Christian who is openly gay, used humor to deflect the bigoted remarks.
“Remember Sodom and Gomorrah!” an attendee at a Des Moines rally yelled. Buttigieg replied to the crowd (as seen in the Des Moines Register video below): “The good news is, the condition of my soul is in the hands of God, but the Iowa caucuses are up to you.”
As Buttigieg spoke in Fort Dodge about the need for marriage equality, a protester blurted, “You betray your baptism!”
The South Bend, Indiana, mayor quipped, per The Associated Press: “Coffee after church gets a little rowdy sometimes.”
“We’re so dug in, in such passionate ways, and I respect that, too,” Buttigieg added. “That gentleman believes that what he is doing is in line with the will of the creator. I view it differently. We ought to be able to view it differently and never question one another’s right to be an American.”
The protester was “hustled out of the room” by Fort Dodge Mayor Matt Bemrich, local news outlet The Messenger reported.