Pete Buttigieg’s husband Chasten has ripped into Republican Representative Anna Paulina Luna for her “homophobic” remarks, after she called out the US Transport Secretary for taking parental leave.
Luna, a Florida Rep., has been campaigning for a new parental leave law that would support members of Congress and allow them to vote by proxy while taking leave after welcoming a child.
While the proposed law has earned support from both Democrats and Republicans, it would only apply to new mothers in Congress who have given birth. It means that other types of new parents would not be supported or allocated a proxy voter if the bill were to pass.
Pete Buttigieg and his husband Chasten welcomed twins Joseph and Penelope in 2021. (Getty)
In a post to X (formerly Twitter) on Friday (19 January), Luna pushed for the proposed bill by writing: “Pete Buttigieg got maternity leave and I didn’t. And he’s a dude. It’s time Congress gets with the times.”
The tweet has been met with heavy backlash from other X users, who couldn’t help but point out the irony of Luna’s demand that Congress “gets with the times”, right after disregarding the validity of Buttigieg’s parental leave just because he’s a “dude.”
Among the backlash to Luna’s tweet was a reply from Buttigieg’s husband Chasten Buttigieg, with whom the US Transport Secretary shares twins Joseph and Penelope.
Buttigieg took parental leave in 2021 to look after the adopted newborn twins, who were hospitalised and put on oxygen shortly after their birth when they became sick with a respiratory syncytial virus (RSV).
Pete Buttigieg’s husband Chasten hit out at Luna over her ‘homophobic’ remark. (Twitter/@PeteButtigieg)
Hitting back at Luna’s comment, Buttigieg’s partner replied: “Every parent deserves parental leave.
“Those first weeks are so crucial for parents and newborns. What a shame to see Representative Luna tarnish this bipartisan effort with unnecessary homophobia.
“’Getting with the times’ would serve you well, Congresswoman.”
Shortly after he posted the tweet, Chasten spoke to The Advocate about the online exchange, and voicing his opinion that all parents should be eligible for parental leave, no matter their gender or how they welcomed their children.
“I’m a big proponent of parental leave,” he told the publication.
“It’s an extremely important time for parents and their newborn, or, as was in our case, newborns. I am glad to see members of both parties come together and agree that equitable parental leave is deserved by all.”
He continued that, while he tries to focus all of his attentions on leaving the world a better place for his children, he struggles to stay silent when someone targets his family.
“I know one day they will judge us for what we did to make the world a better place, so I’ll focus on that work and try my best to stay out of the petty fights some online or in Congress are so eager to pick,” he said.
“That doesn’t mean I’ll be silent when someone goes after my family, though. I’ll always stick up for my kids.”
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