South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete ButtigiegPete ButtigiegScaled-back Pride Month poses challenges for fundraising, outreach Biden hopes to pick VP by Aug. 1 It’s as if a Trump operative infiltrated the Democratic primary process MORE’s (D) presidential campaign announced Friday it will no longer accept donations from lobbyists and will return over $30,000 in contributions it has already received.

“Mayor Pete will not be influenced by special-interest money, and we understand that making this promise is an important part of that commitment.

“We understand that making this decision and being vocal about our values is important; that the decision means more than just whether or not we are willing to accept money from a specific individual,” the campaign wrote in an email to supporters, saying the refund will amount to $30,250 donated from 39 individuals.

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“Standing up for our collective values not only includes saying we believe that campaigns should not take money from lobbyists; it also means being aware of the loopholes that still allow special interests to impact the campaign,” the campaign wrote. 

The campaign vowed to establish internal procedures to ensure it is abiding by its new promise.

The midwestern mayor has surged in recent polls and raked in $7 million in the first quarter of 2019 after several viral moments and an appearance at a CNN town hall that caught the eyes of donors and political observers in Washington.

Buttigieg had won early support from lobbyists with whom he has developed ties throughout his career, but their support presented him a tough decision, as progressive groups have pushed Democratic contenders to reject special interest money.

Several other presidential candidates, including Sens. Bernie SandersBernie SandersThe Hill’s 12:30 Report: Milley apologizes for church photo-op Harris grapples with defund the police movement amid veep talk Biden courts younger voters — who have been a weakness MORE (I-Vt.), Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisRand Paul introduces bill to end no-knock warrants The Hill’s Campaign Report: Biden campaign goes on offensive against Facebook McEnany says Juneteenth is a very ‘meaningful’ day to Trump MORE (D-Calif.), Cory BookerCory Anthony BookerRand Paul introduces bill to end no-knock warrants Black lawmakers unveil bill to remove Confederate statues from Capitol Harris grapples with defund the police movement amid veep talk MORE (D-N.J.) and more, have already sworn off corporate and lobbyist donations. Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenWarren, Democrats urge Trump to back down from veto threat over changing Confederate-named bases OVERNIGHT DEFENSE: Joint Chiefs chairman says he regrets participating in Trump photo-op | GOP senators back Joint Chiefs chairman who voiced regret over Trump photo-op | Senate panel approves 0B defense policy bill Trump on collision course with Congress over bases with Confederate names MORE (D-Mass.) vowed to go a step farther, saying she would not attend high-priced, private fundraisers and one-on-one meetings with wealthy donors.

Buttigieg had already sworn off donations from corporate PACs but did not cut off money from influential lobbying groups until Friday.

The Indiana Democrat’s announcement also comes the same day former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenHillicon Valley: Biden calls on Facebook to change political speech rules | Dems demand hearings after Georgia election chaos | Microsoft stops selling facial recognition tech to police Trump finalizing executive order calling on police to use ‘force with compassion’ The Hill’s Campaign Report: Biden campaign goes on offensive against Facebook MORE’s presidential campaign declared it raked in $6.3 million in its first 24 hours, more than any other candidates’ first-day haul.

About $700,000 of that was garnered at a Thursday fundraiser hosted by Comcast executive David Cohen and health insurance executive Daniel Hilferty, according to The Wall Street Journal.

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