The sixth Democratic Debate started off a little sleepy until a few of the candidates opted for a winning strategy that brought viewers of varying loyalties together: Dunk on Mayor Pete.
(Pete Buttigieg is currently leading Iowa primary polls, followed by Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren.) Buttigieg butted heads with Amy Klobuchar on leadership and received a slight from Sanders about billionaire donors, but it was Warren who had the most grueling back and forth of the night with Buttigieg.
Warren took him to task about a fundraiser he held in a wine cave in Napa, California on December 15. The lavish wine cave had a Swarovski crystal chandelier an overall whiff of Rich People Shit.
“The mayor just recently had a fund-raiser that was held in a wine cave full of crystals and served $900 a bottle wine,” Warren said. “I’ve said to anyone who wants to donate to me, if you want to donate to me, that’s fine. But don’t come around later expecting to be named ambassador, because that’s what goes on at these high dollar fundraisers.
Buttigieg retorted that Warren has a net worth 100 times greater than his.
“You know, according to Forbes magazine, I’m literally the only person on this stage who is not a millionaire or a billionaire,” Buttigieg said. “So this is important. This is the problem with issuing purity tests you cannot yourself pass.”
“I do not sell access to my time,” Warren said. “I don’t spend time with millionaires and billionaires. I don’t meet behind closed doors.”
Warren continued: “This ought to be an easy step. If you can’t stand up and take the steps that are relatively easy...can’t stand up to the wealthy and well connected when it’s relatively easy, when you’re a candidate, then how can the American people believe you’re going to stand up to the wealthy and well connected when it’s really hard?”
Then in came Amy Klobuchar, playing referee, ruining the brawl.
“I have never even been to a wine cave,” Klobuchar said. “I have been to the wind cave in South Dakota, which I suggest you go to.”
Sure, Klobuchar. I’d rather dunk on Pete in a wind tunnel than a wine cave.