A member of the South Bend, Ind., city council criticized 2020 Democratic presidential contender and former mayor Pete Buttigieg after he stumbled over a question regarding race relations during a political debate Friday.
As a Councilman in South Bend, I know why Pete Buttigieg looked like a deer in headlights last night when talking about systemic racism in the South Bend Police,” South Bend Councilman Henry Davis Jr. wrote on Twitter. “He tolerated it, he perpetuated it, and last night he lied to millions of Americans about it.”
Davis also blasted Buttigieg for blocking the release of secret tapes that were recorded by the former black police chief of South Bend, Darryl Boykins, to expose racism in the department.
“Myself and other Council members SUED PETE for the release of SECRET TAPES exposing racism in the South Bend police and a (successful) conspiracy to get Pete to fire the first Black police chief,” he wrote. “Pete pulled every legal trick possible to keep these secret.”
Davis has been fighting to have the tapes released, though Buttigieg and the city has refused to turn them over, arguing they may have been recorded illegally.
A St. Joseph County judge ruled Monday that the tapes could legally be released, but that ruling will likely be appealed in a higher court.
Boykins and a city official were forced out by the former mayor and current top presidential contender for taping the conversations after Buttigieg learned the police chief was being investigated by the FBI.
Davis described Buttigieg’s time as mayor as rife with “rampant systemic racism.”
Buttigieg struggled mightily during an ABC News presidential primary debate on Friday after moderator Linsey Davis challenged him to explain the rise in racial disparity of drug arrests.