Former South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg pitched “future former Republicans” his platform on Sunday on Fox Newsas a final pre-Iowa caucuses boost.

“I don’t think you have to be Democrat to see what is wrong with this president and this presidency,” Buttigieg told the Fox News town hall audience of about 430. “I am meeting a lot of what I like to call ‘future former Republicans’ who are coming to my events.”

The first member of Congress to endorse Buttigieg, Rep. Don Beyer (D-Virginia), praised his appearance on the network as showing his ability to work with both parties.

“The pushback on Pete is that, A, he’s young, and B, he’s gay,” Beyer said. “A way he overcomes this double negative message is going into the lion’s den, performing well, and have people come out and say, ‘Hey, I like him. He sounds reasonable.’”

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He added that by going on Fox News, “he’s affirming his validity as a national candidate who can beat Donald Trump.”

Onstage Sunday night, Buttigieg was interrogated over his relatively short political resume and his lack of support from African-American voters.

“If what you’re looking for is the most years spent in Washington, you’ve got a clear choice and it’s not going to be me,” Buttigieg responded to a question about his qualifications. “But I would also argue that the kind of experience you have governing on the ground in a city of any size is the kind of experience we need more of in Washington.”

As far as his low favorability among African-American voters, Buttigieg acknowledged Biden’s strong lead in that demographic saying, “having eight months to introduce yourself is, of course, not the same as having 20 or 30 or 40 years.”

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