SOUTH BEND, Ind. — December 31st was Pete Buttigieg’s last full day as Mayor of South Bend. January 1st, he handed the office over to fellow Democrat James Mueller in a swearing-in ceremony at City Hall.
A bitter-sweet moment for Buttigieg, but added it will be nice to be able to put all his efforts into his surging presidential campaign.
“Setting aside that juggling, I think, will be good for the city and good for the campaign,” he said. “I’m reluctant to hand over the keys because I love the job so much, but I know the city will be in good hands and I’m ready to make that transition.”
Mueller already has several goals on his agenda he’d like to accomplish with his new administration.
“Making progress on our neighborhoods, public safety reform, and improving our education system,” Mueller listed. “Making sure we continue this positive trajectory that’s begun over the last eight years.”
Mueller defeated Republican Sam Haas in the race for Mayor of South Bend in November.
As for Buttigieg, his presidential campaign has a lot of momentum heading into the new year. In the fourth quarter of 2019, his campaign raised over $24 million. His campaign now has over $76 million in the bank. The top fundraiser in the fourth quarter was Sen. Bernie Sanders. He raked in $34 million.
Buttigieg also has a wide lead in the polls in the first caucus state of Iowa. In the national polls, former Vice President Joe Biden is leading with 29-percent of likely voters supporting him, according to this week’s Economist-YouGov poll.
(PHOTO: Scott Olson/Getty Images)