‘Pete Buttigieg can’t take a joke’: Mike Pence refuses to apologize for mocking Transporation secretary’s ‘maternity leave’ after husband Chasten and White House demanded he say sorry
- Former Vice President Mike Pence refused to apologize on Thursday for a joke he made about Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg taking ‘maternity leave’
- Pence commented that the Gridiron Dinner where he used the joke was a “roast” and chided Buttigieg for not being able to take a joke.
- The White House had called the prank “homophobic” as Pete’s husband Chasten Buttigieg appeared on The View and complained about it
Former Vice President Mike Pence declined to apologize Thursday for a joke he made about the chaos that ensued while Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg was on “maternity leave.”
“The Gridiron Dinner is a roast. I had a lot of jokes directed at me, and I made a lot of jokes against Republicans and Democrats,” Pence told reporters at an event in Keene, New Hampshire. “All I can think of is that Pete Buttigieg not only can’t do his job, but he can’t take a joke.”
Pence was the GOP speaker at Saturday night’s Gridiron Dinner in Washington, poking fun at the Secretary of Transportation for taking time off after the birth of his adopted twins.
“When Pete’s two children were born, he took two months of maternity leave, which left thousands of travelers stranded at airports, the air traffic system shut down, and planes colliding almost mid-air,” Pence said. “I mean, Pete Buttigieg is the only person in human history to have had a child and the rest of us are going to have postpartum depression.”
The White House called the joke “homophobic” and said it was “offensive and inappropriate,” while Pete’s husband Chasten took to The View on Thursday where it was the main topic of conversation.
Former Vice President Mike Pence declined to apologize Thursday for a joke he made about the chaos that ensued when Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg was on maternity leave
Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg with his twins Gus and Penelope. The White House called Pence’s joke “homophobic” and “offensive and inappropriate”
Chasten Buttigieg told the co-hosts that the joke “flies in the face” of the “family values” Pence preaches and revealed that the Buttigiegs have not received an apology from the Republican.
The transportation secretary’s husband told The View that “when your child is on a ventilator, you don’t want to be anywhere but at their bedside.”
The Buttigiegs’ son, Gus, spent two months in the NICU as a newborn.
“I just don’t take that when it’s directed at my family,” Buttigieg said, explaining why he decided to speak out.
“And I don’t think anyone else would, especially when you bring a very small, medically fragile child into it,” Buttigieg countered.
Buttigieg told The View cohosts that Pence was deliberately using “maternity leave,” as a way to feminize his husband, and called the move “misogynistic.”
Chasten Buttigieg went after Pence on Thursday, saying a “maternity leave” joke he made about Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg “contradicts” the “family values” Pence preaches
Pence was the GOP Saturday night speaker at Gridiron. Pence joked that the country was going into “postpartum depression” from the travel issues that had arisen while Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg was on “maternity leave.”
He argued that the first few weeks he spent with the twins, when both he and Pete were on paternity leave, were not a “holiday” but an incredibly difficult time, as their daughter Penelope also required 24-hour care.
“And there’s nothing weak about that work,” Buttigieg told The View.
The Gridiron Club consists of journalists who perform skits and songs mocking political parties as well as themselves. Each year there is also a Democrat, a Republican, and a speaker representing the White House.
The humor at dinner should be “scorch, not burn.”
On Saturday night, Pence’s comments about Pete Buttigieg were overshadowed by newsy remarks he made about former President Donald Trump, as he shared how he felt on January 6 when the Capitol was attacked by a pro-Trump mob.
“I wasn’t scared, I was angry. President Trump was wrong,” Pence said. “I had no right to overturn the election and his reckless words endangered my family and everyone in the Capitol that day.”
“And I know that history will hold Donald Trump accountable,” Pence said.