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Surging in NH, Buttigieg Returns to Boston

Polls shows Pete Buttigieg, relatively unknown until just a couple of months ago, tied with Bernie Sanders for second place in New Hampshire behind Joe Biden in the presidential race.

Massachusetts is another state that is showing Buttigieg a lot of support. At a grassroots fundraiser at the Somerville Theater Tuesday, the surprise guest was Chasten Buttigieg, husband of Pete.

Chasten Buttigieg took photos and shook hands with those waiting in the long line formed hours before the event began.

"At this point, I'm thinking I'm with him," one attendee said of Pete Buttigieg.

"I feel that he's got appeal and an understanding of some of the problems that exist in the industrial Midwest," said another.

The 37-year-old mayor of South Bend, Indiana, now one of the hottest 2020 candidates, had a full day in the Boston area — his third trip to Boston this month — including two other fundraisers, both organized by event planner Bryan Rafanelli, a friend to both the Clintons and Obamas. A luncheon in the Back Bay raised about $100,000.

Attendee Jack Wofford says Buttigieg has wide appeal to young and old as a Rhodes Scholar, a Navy intelligence officer and a mayor.

"I think his candidacy is fascinating and exciting, and has huge potential," Wofford said. "Being gay is just one aspect of himself, as it is for me."

"It's time for the next generation to take the lead in this country," said Senate Ways and Means Chair Mike Rodrigues at the luncheon.

Buttigieg had one last fundraiser in Boston, at a private home in the South End.

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