News

Elections

Buttigieg Bristles at ‘Bullsh**’ Suggestion He Was Involved in ‘Corporate Price Fixing’ Scandal

South Bend, Ind., mayor Pete Buttigieg at the Democratic primary debate at Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa, January 14, 2020. (Shannon Stapleton/Reuters)

Democratic presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg slammed as “bullshit” the suggestion that he is implicated in a “corporate price fixing” scandal that ensnared a client of the consulting firm he worked for.

“You’ve been on the front lines of corporate price fixing,” New York Times reporter Binyamin Appelbaum remarked when the South Bend, Ind. mayor sat down with the paper’s editorial board on Thursday. “You’ve had direct experience in many of the things that make a lot of young people very angry about the way that this country is operating right now. You don’t seem to embody that anger.”

“So the proposition that I’ve been on front lines of corporate price fixing is bullshit. Just to get that out of the way,” Buttigieg hit back.

“You worked for a company that was fixing bread prices,” Appelbaum said.

“No, I worked for a consulting company that had a client that may have been involved in fixing or was apparently in a scandal. I was not aware of the Canadian bread pricing scandal until last night,” the mayor argued.

Buttigieg worked for the consulting firm McKinsey & Company, which he left in 2010 to run for office, eventually becoming mayor of South Bend in 2012.

In 2017, the Canadian supermarket chain Loblaws admitted to engaging in a wide-ranging price-fixing scandal spanning over a decade that involved the prices of bread at its stores. During his time at McKinsey, Buttigieg spend six months in Toronto analyzing “the effects of price cuts on various combinations of items across hundreds of stores” for Loblaws.

Last year, Buttigieg’s campaign said he was not directly involved in the scandal but was simply “part of a team that ran analytics and put together a model to help this supermarket chain determine how much — and in what stores— they could make certain items more affordable in order to gain new customers.”

Buttigieg has fielded accusations in recent weeks from other 2020 candidates that he is too cozy with the corporate world, a top issue for candidates like Senator Elizabeth Warren, who called out the mayor for holding a private fundraiser in a wine cave with wealthy donors.

Most Popular

Law & the Courts

Bill Barr Derangement Syndrome

Can the republic survive Attorney General William Barr? That’s the question that has seized the media and center-left, which have worked themselves into a full-blown panic over an attorney general who is, inarguably, a serious legal figure and one of the adults in the room late in President Trump’s first ... Read More
Law & the Courts

Bill Barr Derangement Syndrome

Can the republic survive Attorney General William Barr? That’s the question that has seized the media and center-left, which have worked themselves into a full-blown panic over an attorney general who is, inarguably, a serious legal figure and one of the adults in the room late in President Trump’s first ... Read More
Elections

RIP Bloomberg 2020

I thought that Bloomberg’s confused half-defense of stop-and-frisk was going to be his low point. Well. His torturous response on his lawsuits and NDAs was truly awful -- beyond incompetent. I wouldn’t be surprised if this were the end of Bloomberg 2020. Read More
Elections

RIP Bloomberg 2020

I thought that Bloomberg’s confused half-defense of stop-and-frisk was going to be his low point. Well. His torturous response on his lawsuits and NDAs was truly awful -- beyond incompetent. I wouldn’t be surprised if this were the end of Bloomberg 2020. Read More
Elections

Trouble in the Workers’ Paradise

Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is precisely the sort of campaign surrogate you want, especially if you are Bernie Sanders: She is young, energetic, charismatic, popular (with the people she needs to be popular with, anyway), and, happily, currently ineligible to run for the presidency ... Read More
Elections

Trouble in the Workers’ Paradise

Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is precisely the sort of campaign surrogate you want, especially if you are Bernie Sanders: She is young, energetic, charismatic, popular (with the people she needs to be popular with, anyway), and, happily, currently ineligible to run for the presidency ... Read More
Elections

At the Debate, Only Losers

To be honest, I’d almost forgotten what they were like. Wednesday’s Democratic presidential primary debate was revealing: Mike Bloomberg was revealed to be unprepared, something for which a man with his resources has no possible excuse; Amy Klobuchar was revealed to be a stammering daisy, her big moment ... Read More
Elections

At the Debate, Only Losers

To be honest, I’d almost forgotten what they were like. Wednesday’s Democratic presidential primary debate was revealing: Mike Bloomberg was revealed to be unprepared, something for which a man with his resources has no possible excuse; Amy Klobuchar was revealed to be a stammering daisy, her big moment ... Read More