Biden to Introduce Former Rival Pete Buttigieg as Transportation Chief   

U.S. President-elect Joe Biden is due to formally introduce Pete Buttigieg, one of his former rivals for the Democratic presidential nomination, as head of the Department of Transportation in his new administration on Wednesday. “Mayor Pete Buttigieg is a patriot and a problem-solver who speaks to the best of who we are as a nation. I am nominating him for Secretary of Transportation because this position stands at the nexus of so many of the interlocking challenges and opportunities ahead of us,” Biden said in a statement Tuesday.”Jobs, infrastructure, equity, and climate all come together at the DOT, the site of some of our most ambitious plans to build back better. I trust Mayor Pete to lead this work with focus, decency, and a bold vision — he will bring people together to get big things done,”  he added.Buttigieg, a former mayor of South Bend, Indiana, was a surprise contender in the Democratic presidential race last year. He was the first openly gay major party candidate to win convention delegates in a bid for the White House.     But Buttigieg’s campaign eventually stalled, and he dropped out of the race before the Democratic Party primaries in early March, and later endorsed Biden.    FILE – Former Democratic presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg endorses former U.S. Vice President Joe Biden at Chicken Scratch in Dallas, Texas, March 2, 2020.Biden has compared the 38-year-old Buttigieg to his late son, Beau.    “To me, it’s the highest compliment I can give any man or woman. And like Beau, he has a backbone like a ramrod,” Biden said of Buttigieg.    Buttigieg has been married to his husband, Chasten, since 2018.      As Transportation chief, Buttigieg would help oversee the country’s highway system, planes, trains and mass transit systems.     Biden has pledged to spend billions of dollars to make major infrastructure improvements, part of the new president’s effort to boost the economy that has been ravaged by the coronavirus pandemic. 

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