Contrary to popular belief, Pete Buttigieg did not outright declare victory in the tumultuous Iowa Caucuses.
Still, he gave an ebullient speech that included the phrase:
... by all indications, we are going on to New Hampshire victorious.
And he is; all the campaigns know, internally, that the day was won by Sanders and Buttigieg or Buttigieg and Sanders, and that is a victory for his small campaign, as well as a historic first — an out gay person will win delegates in a presidential contest.
Sadly, Bernie's thin-skinned supporters — who had been complaining (again!) that the process was rigged against them before it even began — have been circulating #MayorCheat and #BernieWon hashtags on Twitter, and it's very likely that Russian bots have amplified them to sow discord. (Read some of the responses to Billy Eichner's reasonable remark about Buttigieg, including the guy who announces that Buttigieg is “universally despised” by LGBTQ people.)
Pete’s rise *is* remarkable. I know some of you don’t care or don’t think it counts, but history will see it as a rather monumental step forward for the perception of how far an openly gay man can connect on a national level. You don’t have to vote for him to acknowledge that.— billy eichner (@billyeichner) February 4, 2020
Look, it's very, very unlikely that Buttigieg wins or comes close to winning other states, so to whine about him making a political decision to project confidence in his performance in Iowa is shortsighted.
The race is not stacked against Bernie Sanders, and more importantly, nobody sane should be #BernieOrBust in 2020. And I hope that whichever Democratic candidate emerges victorious in Iowa and in the primary,