CODE RED: Please Find Pete. He's MIA

Pete Buttigieg, the Secretary of Transportation, took two months off for paternity leave. He’s still on leave. No one noticed he was gone until recently, but that’s another story. (It is ably discussed by my colleague Mike Miller here).

Buttigieg has little support for his absence. It’s really kind of stunning that Buttigieg has managed to take 25 percent of his time on the job, off. He’s been at home with his husband and two newborns.  Neither parent are “birthing persons,” so why two months? Because he can, I guess, and even with a still growing supply chain problem, Buttigieg has no regrets.

He’s gamed the system, but he’s the victim. Buttigieg quickly blamed the “right-wing” for being anti-family. That’s not the issue, Pete. It’s the secretary of transportation taking two months off in the middle of a national supply chain crisis.

His supporters tried to turn it into gay-bashing. It’s not, of course –- it’s the timing (mid-crisis) and length of the leave (two months). I can see maybe taking a month off on the outside, if there was a difficult birth, postpartum depression, or a C-section with mom laid up and in physical pain. But, there is no mother. Buttigieg is married to a man. Neither of them are hurting after their twins’ birth.

I’m a father of three. All three were C-sections. My wife was in a lot of pain for about a week. I managed to work a full day and help my wife at night who, to her credit, was back rolling like a champ within a few weeks. I bonded just fine, after work. I managed to take over for mom after I got home. It wasn’t that hard, Pete.

This isn’t about Buttigieg being gay. It’s about gaming the system. It’s about whining when you got caught gaming the system. It’s about a guy with, ostensibly, a lot of responsibility who disappeared for two months. Buttigieg can blame externalities for the complaints, and he can play victim  — but this all on you, new dad. You pooped your pants. Clean up the mess yourself.

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