Amy Klobuchar blanks Pete Buttigieg and avoids shaking his hand at the end of Democratic debate

Oliver O'Connell
Pete Buttigieg and Amy Klobuchar clash during the Democratic debate in Las Vegas: Getty Images

At the end of a raucous Democratic primary debate in Las Vegas that saw multiple clashes between the six presidential hopefuls on stage, there seemed to be no love lost between two sparring partners in particular.

Minnesota senator Amy Klobuchar and the former mayor of South Bend, Indiana, Pete Buttigieg, traded blows over the former forgetting the name of the President of Mexico, and the latter’s relative electoral inexperience, in a heated exchange.

After candidates had delivered their closing remarks and NBC’s Lester Holt had ended the debate, Ms Klobuchar appeared to rebuff Mr Buttigieg’s attempt to shake her hand.

Having shaken the hand of former vice president Joe Biden, “Mayor Pete” turned to the Minnesota senator. However, Ms Klobuchar made no eye contact and gave him a wide berth as she left her podium.

Footage from the debate also appears to show her avoiding the other four candidates as she quickly exits the stage.

Mr Buttigieg paused before instead turning to shake Vermont senator Bernie Sanders' hand.

As two midwestern centrists, Ms Klobuchar and Mr Buttigieg are theoretically battling for the same part of the Democratic party’s electorate ahead of Saturday’s Nevada caucus. They are also competing for many of the same votes as Mr Biden.

In an average of polls in Nevada, Mr Buttigieg is currently at 11.5 per cent, neck-and-neck with senator Elizabeth Warren, and Ms Klobuchar is at 8.8 per cent tied with former New York mayor Mike Bloomberg.

Mr Biden is polling an average of 15.1 per cent, and senator Sanders is out in front at 26.8 per cent.

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