Former Vice President Joe Biden has Mayor Pete Buttigieg in his crosshairs.
According to Reuters, Biden has accused Buttigieg of “stealing” his healthcare plan while campaigning in Iowa. (The presidential candidate was in the state for eight days to fight for the hotly contested area). Biden made this accusation while talking to reporters on his campaign bus this Monday.
In his announced health plan, Biden shares his desire to expand the Affordable Care Act, commonly known as Obamacare. Biden wants to add a “public option,” which would allow citizens the chance to opt into a government plan. Meanwhile, the plan would keep the option open for individuals to go with private insurers.
It turns out, however, that Joe Biden is not the only one suggesting such a health plan. In fact, Pete Buttigieg is doing the same thing. The South Bend, Indiana mayor has been pushing for a public option as well. Buttigieg is even known for the phrase “Medicare for all who want it.” And now, Biden has expressed some resentment towards Buttigieg over the shared health plan.
“He stole it,” Biden told reporters before decrying hypocrisy. “What would you have done to me? You’d have torn my ears off.”
This statement comes just a day after Biden expressed his disinterest in attacking the mayor.
“Anything I say about Pete will be taken as being a criticism or a negative about Pete, and I don’t have any negative feelings about Pete at all,” said Biden on Sunday, according to Reuters. “I think he’s a talented guy.”
In response to Biden’s Monday claims, a spokesperson for Buttigieg’s campaign pointed out that the “Medicare for all who want it” stance pre-dates Biden’s presidential campaign. Otherwise, the campaign refuses to comment on the situation.