In a recent poll, 23 percent of likely Democratic voters said they preferred Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg as the party’s 2024 presidential nominee over President Joe Biden, Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), and Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT). But the out secretary says he has no plans to leave the Biden administration anytime soon.
“I don’t have any plans to do any job besides the one I’ve got. It’s taking 110% of my attention and energy,” Buttigieg told Punchbowl News this week, responding to the question of whether he might run for president in 2024 or for the Michigan Senate seat that will become available when Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D) retires in 2025. Buttigieg’s husband, Chasten, is from Michigan.
“It’s a privilege to be doing the work,” he continued. “That’s what I’m going to be doing.”
Asked how long he sees himself serving as Transportation Secretary in light of high-profile Biden administration departures like that of White House Chief of Staff Ron Klain, Buttigieg said the decision was “above my pay grade.”
“I love this job and I feel like we’re right in the middle of the action,” he said. “I’m not planning on going anywhere because we’re smack in the middle of historic work.”
“I serve at the pleasure of the president for the time being,” Buttigieg explained. “Every political appointee accepts that.”
The Secretary also discussed the debt limit showdown and the likelihood that President Biden and House Speaker Kevin McCarthy might come to a deal; the recent Southwest Airlines meltdown; and the Biden Administration’s infrastructure message.
Politico previously reported that Buttigieg has been quietly assembling a campaign infrastructure ready to spring into action when the opportunity arises. The same Granite State Poll that found Democratic voters preferring Buttigieg over Biden in 2024 indicated that the former mayor of South Bend, Indiana enjoys a 69 percent approval rating among likely Democratic voters, compared with just 49 percent for Biden.