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Exclusive: Mayor Pete on qualifying for the fourth democratic debate

Exclusive: Mayor Pete on qualifying for the fourth democratic debate

WESTERVILLE, OH. --- Mayor Pete Buttigieg among the 12 democrats facing off in a crucial Ohio debate at Otterbein University Tuesday night, qualifying for his fourth presidential debate in a row.

He started his presidential journey just 6 months ago as a no name. Now, he’s polling just behind the front runners: Joe Biden, Elizabeth Warren, and Bernie Sanders.

ABC57’s Tiffany Salameh spoke exclusively with the mayor ahead of the fourth debate, telling her his journey on the campaign has been unforgettable.

“It’s almost an out of body experience sometimes,” Buttgieg said. “When you’re going to these events you see and sometimes the state that we’re visiting for the first time over the course of the campaign that already there are so many who are excited and connected to what it is we’re trying to offer, want to see change, want to see bold solutions, want a president that can unify the country. I’ll always be proud that this began right here in South Bend.”

The mayor raked in $19.1 million dollars in the third quarter ahead of the historic debate with more than half a million people chipping in.

“The people who show up at our rallies, the people who volunteer, just the people who say they are going to vote or caucus for us, it’s so inspiring to see how much that’s grown.”

Growing his support base is what Buttigeig said his goal is in this Ohio debate. With 12 set to take the stage, he explains his plan is to stand out.

“There’s going to be 12 of us on that stage in Ohio. So a big part of it is making sure we have a way to cut through, making sure anyone who watches that debate understands why I’m different from the others, what our vision is, how my approach on healthcare is different, why we believe our approach on climate is the best one. These issues are so important and you only get a few minutes sometimes in these 12 way debates but we’re going to make sure we do that effectively.”

Buttigieg has already qualified for the fifth round of debates coming up in November. He’s among only 7 candidates to qualify so far.

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