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Presidential hopeful Pete Buttigieg holds town hall in Salt Lake City

#Pete2020 – #Democraticpresidential candidate #PeteButtigieg said addressing #climatechange and reforming the #criminaljustice system would be two of his focuses as #president during a campaign stop in #SaltLakeCity.

At a #townhall on Monday evening, Buttigieg said he is “ready to take on” #PresidentDonaldTrump and “build a #politicalmovement that will speak to all #Americans.”

Buttigieg said he, like other Democratic candidates, has the goal of ensuring the United States is carbon neutral by 2050.

“We’ve got to invite everybody to be part of the solution,” he said, including farmers and industrial workers.

When asked about his policy on marijuana, Buttigieg said he thought it should be legal at the federal level, adding that he didn’t think drug possession warranted incarceration.

The presidential candidate praised Sen. Mitt Romney, R-Utah, who he disagrees with “on all kinds of things,” for following his conscience and breaking party lines in voting to convict Trump of abuse of power in his impeachment trial.

Buttigieg is the first openly gay candidate to run for president. Jade Velazquez, one of Utah’s organizers for the Buttigieg campaign, spoke about being gay himself and how he felt excluded when he was growing up.

“As a young gay kid, I was an outsider,” Velazquez said, adding that Buttigieg would make people of all sexualities feel welcome in the U.S.

Salt Lake City Mayor Erin Mendenhall spoke at Monday’s town hall and announced her endorsement for Buttigieg.

The former mayor of South Bend, Indiana, currently leads Democrats in total delegates awarded. With 22 delegates so far, Buttigieg is slightly ahead of Sen. Bernie Sanders, D-Vermont, who has 21 delegates, and far ahead of other Democratic candidates, including Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Massachusetts, and Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minnesota, all of whom have less than 10 delegates.

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