5. Voters say he’s got the intangibles. Why does Buttigieg appear more popular right now than another young hotshot politician running for president, former congressman Beto O’Rourke? Voters who shared their thoughts with The Fix said Buttigieg has a calm personality, an ease on the biggest stage possible and a direct, eloquent way of speaking that has earned him comparisons to a young Barack Obama.
That’s what Carolyn Engelhard, a professor at the University of Virginia, likes about him. “At the most basic human level, I just want to believe in something good, I want to revel in the promise of the next generation, and I want a leader who believes in compassionate caring for those less fortunate,” she wrote to The Fix. “Obama campaigned on hope, and Trump campaigned on fear. I think Mayor Pete may campaign on ‘care.’ ”