Pete Buttigieg's 'special announcement' set to start at 2 p.m. Sunday. Here's what to expect.
Update: An event for South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg is scheduled to start at 2 p.m. Sunday inside the city’s Studebaker Building 84, where he is widely expected to announce his formal entry into the 2020 presidential race.
Doors open at noon for the event, which was moved inside because of weather concerns. The event is expected to be livestreamed on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.
Look for updates at IndyStar.com.
Earlier: South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg took to Twitter and the airwaves Thursday to say he's making an announcement next week, one that at least one pundit says sounds like a nod to a formal presidential candidacy.
While Buttigieg has made it clear he wants a shot at the White House, so far he's only announced an exploratory committee, a step short of an actual campaign. That could change April 14.
He tweeted Thursday morning that he would be making a “special announcement."
“If you’re ready to make our politics more honest, to fix our democracy, to defend racial justice, to look to the future, to bring generations together, join us, April 14th, South Bend," Buttigieg said in a video he posted on his Twitter account.
On ABC's "Good Morning America," he said it’s the kind of announcement you can only make once.
Those who want to attend in person can RSVP at www.peteforamerica.com/april14/. It will also be live-streamed.
Candidate Pete would have more rules than Mayor Pete
Buttigieg announced his exploratory committee Jan. 23, which allowed him to test the waters without officially saying he was running for president. If he files a candidacy, he'll have to follow a more stringent set of fundraising rules. Most significantly, he'd have to file campaign finance reports. The first one is due April 15, the day after his announcement.
If he declares a campaign, he's also freer to call himself a candidate, pay for political advertising and polling, to raise money.
The real advantage, pundits say, to forming an exploratory committee and then declaring a campaign is more political in nature: It gives candidates two chances to dominate the news cycle.
"Forming an exploratory committee allows you to begin collecting money, making expenditures and doing a thorough investigation of whether you're campaign is viable," said Andy Downs, director of the Mike Downs Center for Indiana Politics. "When you become an actual candidate, you are committed to running for office."
'There is only one thing you are announcing'
Downs thinks Buttigieg is running.
"I think any time a person who is thinking about running for office ... says come and join me in this city," Downs said, "is looking for a crowd of thousands. And if that's the case, then there is only one thing you are announcing. The short answer is, yes, I expect that on the 14th he is announcing he is running for president."
Buttigieg, originally seen as a long-shot candidate with a hard-to-pronounce last name, has been everywhere in recent weeks, rising in the polls, visiting the early nominating states of Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina and logging airtime on network and cable TV.
Earlier this week, he announced he raised $7 million in the first quarter of this year. While that pales in comparison to more prominent Democrats, it exceeded his own expectations.
In the most recent Morning Consult poll released this week 3 percent of Democratic voters nationwide said they would vote for him, his highest Morning Consult polling numbers yet. More impressively, his net favorability has increased by 11 percentage points since early February, the biggest increase for any Democrat the poll tracks.
Call IndyStar Statehouse reporter Kaitlin Lange at 317-432-9270. Follow her on Twitter: @kaitlin_lange.