Earlier this year, Pete Buttigieg and husband Chasten welcomed twin boys into their home. The transportation secretary later announced that he would be taking paternity leave to bond with his new children.
The hosts of Fox News slammed Buttigieg for the decision. Some even claimed that the current supply chain issues were due to the choice.
But the most extreme comments came from Tucker Carlson. Carlson mocked Buttigieg for taking paternity leave, painting him to be less masculine than others. The transportation secretary plans on turning the matter into a positive and promoting the practice.
Buttigieg told reporters, “The negativity was unfortunate but, in a way, maybe some good comes out of it too because it’s helped us have a conversation about parental leave.”
The Biden staffer also talked about the issue during a recent appearance on The View, noting, “Culturally, we do have to get across the idea that this is work. My work day as secretary of Transportation starts at a relatively normal hour. My work day as a job starts around three in the morning.”
“This is important for women who find their ability to get ahead in their careers influenced by these judgments that are being made about whether you can be a parent and an effective employee at the same time. But also men. If there’s this idea that, you know, men have access to paternity leave but it’s frowned on if they actually use it, obviously that doesn’t work for a marriage like mine but also for a man who’s married to a woman.”
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Todd Neikirk is a New Jersey-based politics and technology writer. His work has been featured in psfk.com, foxsports.com, and PoliticusUSA. An avid pet lover, he has been known to contribute to Pet Lifestyles Magazine. He enjoys sports, politics, technology, and spending time at the shore with his family.