The presidential campaign of Pete Buttigieg, who wants to be the Democrats’ answer to US President Donald Trump in the 2020 election, is a standout story in the baffling world of American politics.

Buttigieg is just 37, and before he took a swing at the Democratic primary race, he was best known as mayor of South Bend, Indiana (population: 102,000). Now he’s in the conversation to lead the party’s ticket in 2020, with the latest polls showing gains against frontrunner and former Vice President Joe Biden.

Then there’s the fact that, if elected, Buttigieg would be the first openly gay politician chosen by a major party to contest a presidential election. In a nation with such a strong conservative presence, Buttigieg leading the Dems against Trump would be an incredible milestone.

But for our purposes, the most interesting, fascinating, gut-punchingly bizarre aspect of Buttigieg’s campaign is the dance. Oh Christ, the dance.

While candidates like Senator Bernie Sanders have built legions of die-hard supporters over decades, Buttigieg’s budding base has encouraged volunteers to dance before official events. The idea, it would seem, is to inject a little energy into Buttigieg’s rallies to echo the adulation at Sanders’ events. In practice, though? Well, if you can imagine Aerobics Oz Style doing a special episode with Panic! At The Disco, you’re 80% of the way there.

Punters have targeted the dance as a point of weakness in Buttigieg’s campaign, using it as a springboard to criticise his policy positions: namely, his refusal to back an Australian-style national healthcare system for the US and his handling of racial issues in South Bend. 

Moreover, people just think the dance is a bit crap.

Even worse: the TikTok teens have logged on.

Again, this is hardly the most pressing political issue to spring from his campaign (the nationalised healthcare system would really help a lot of Americans!) but Jesus, haven’t you ever heard of closing the goddamned door?

Image: @rachelvscott / Twitter