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Pete Buttigieg. Photo: Scott Eisen/Getty Images

South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg has hired Michael Halle — a close adviser to former Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe who most recently ran Richard Cordray's failed 2018 campaign for Ohio governor — as a senior strategist, the Buttigieg campaign confirmed to Axios. It is unclear when his official start date is.

Why it matters: Halle, who also ran Hillary Clinton’s 2016 battleground-state strategy, has impeccable connections to the Democratic establishment and extensive experience working on major campaigns. His hire is the latest in a steady drumbeat of big names that Buttigieg has brought on, with the campaign telling Axios to expect other personnel announcements in the coming days.

  • Jess O'Connell, former CEO of the Democratic National Committee who also served as executive director of EMILY’s List and had a senior role in Hillary Clinton's 2008 presidential campaign, recently announced that she has also joined the campaign as a senior adviser.
  • Halle did not immediately respond to Axios' request for comment.

Background: Halle served as deputy field director to Barack Obama for his 2008 campaign, and later as general election director for Obama's 2012 re-election campaign.

  • He also worked as campaign manager for former Charlotte Mayor Anthony Foxx's re-election campaign (Foxx was later nominated and confirmed as secretary of transportation under Obama).
  • He later served as the coordinated campaign director for McAuliffe, as well as McAuliffe's political action committee, Common Good VA.
  • He then joined Clinton's 2016 presidential election campaign in a senior role, before being hired as Cordray's campaign manager in 2018.

Go deeper

6 hours ago - Health

FDA advisory panel recommends Pfizer boosters for those 65 and older

A healthcare worker prepares a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine at the Key Biscayne Community Center on Aug. 24, 2021. Photo: Eva Marie Uzcategui/Bloomberg via Getty Images

A key Food and Drug Administration advisory panel on Friday overwhelmingly voted against recommending Pfizer vaccine booster shots for younger Americans, but unanimously recommended approving the third shots for individuals 65 and older, as well as those at high-risk of severe COVID-19.

Why it matters: While the votes are non-binding, and the FDA must still make a final decision, Friday's move pours cold water on the Biden administration's plan to begin administering boosters to most individuals who received the Pfizer vaccine later this month.

6 hours ago - World

France recalls ambassadors from U.S. and Australia over submarine deal

Secretary of State Antony Blinken (L), French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian (C), and French ambassador to the U.S. Philippe Etienne. Photo: Nicholas Kamm/AFP via Getty Images

France has taken the extraordinary step of recalling its ambassadors to the U.S. and Australia after both countries blindsided their French allies with a new military pact and submarine contract, the French Foreign Ministry announced on Friday.

The backstory: While sealing an agreement with the U.S. and U.K. to acquire nuclear submarines, Australia ripped up an existing $90 billion submarine deal with France. That led senior French officials to accuse the U.S. of a "stab in the back."

Updated 7 hours ago - World

In reversal, Pentagon now says drone strike killed 10 Afghan civilians

Caskets for the dead are carried towards the gravesite as relatives and friends attend a mass funeral for members of a family that is said to have been killed in a U.S. drone airstrike, in Kabul on Aug. 30. Photo: Marcus Yam/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

A U.S. drone strike launched on Aug. 29 killed 10 civilians in Afghanistan, including seven children, rather than the Islamic State extremists the Biden administration claimed it targeted, the Pentagon said Friday.

Why it matters: U.S. Central Command said at the time that officials "know" the drone strike "disrupted an imminent ISIS-K threat" to Kabul's airport, and that they were "confident we successfully hit the target."