Buttigieg endorses former chief of staff for mayor

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SOUTH BEND, Ind. (WNDU) - As South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg prepares to pursue his presidential interests, he made an endorsement for a South Bend mayoral candidate Monday.

Buttigieg's former chief of staff, James Mueller, is campaigning to take office in 2020. Buttigieg says Mueller has the capacity to handle the tremendously complex and sensitive situations seen in South Bend.

Mueller grew up in the city, worked and studied research science and government, and overall "cares about this city."

"I believe he's the right kind of leader for the next chapter in our city," Buttigieg said of Mueller. "He has the experience, he has the vision. I believe in James Mueller. I believe in his intellect, I believe in his character. I trust him, and that's why he has my vote for mayor. I trust him. And I hope many other people will see the same as they get to know him over the next few weeks."

Mueller has taken a leave of absence from his current job as Executive Director of Community Investment in order to focus on the campaign.