Democratic Rep. Dean Phillips of Minnesota launched a White House bid during a CBS News interview released Thursday evening, challenging President Joe Biden in 2024.
Phillips had been weighing a run for months, citing concerns over Biden’s age and electability, as well as the lack of alternatives in the Democratic field. The congressman announced his presidential campaign during an interview with CBS News’ Robert Costa where he insisted 2024 needs to be “about the future.”
“I am. I have to,” Phillips told Costa when asked if he’s running for president. “I think President Biden has done a spectacular job for our country. But it’s not about the past. This is an election about the future. I will not sit still I will not be quiet in the face of numbers that are so clearly saying that we’re going to be facing an emergency next November.”
Phillips recently reached out to the New Hampshire Democratic Party Chairman Ray Buckley, and approached potential staffers to build his campaign’s operation within the state ahead of his launch.
BREAKING: Rep. Dean Phillips (D-MN) is running for president, challenging Pres. Biden in the Democratic primary race.
— CBS Mornings (@CBSMornings) October 27, 2023
Phillips was one of the first elected Democrats to warn against Biden running for reelection when he called for a “generational change” in July 2022. The congressman has also expressed concern that Biden’s candidacy could hand the White House back to former President Donald Trump, who has been leading the president for a potential 2024 rematch in a series of recent national and battleground state polls.
The RealClearPolitics average for a 2024 national Democratic primary, based on polls conducted between Oct. 12 and Oct. 23, indicates Biden has 70.3% support, followed by self-help author Marianne Williamson at 9%. Robert F. Kennedy Jr. was polling around 14% prior to his campaign’s switch from Democrat to independent on Oct. 9.
Phillips stepped down from his position as co-chair of the House Democratic Policy and Communications Committee on Oct. 1 ahead of his presidential announcement, citing “convictions” he held about the 2024 election.
The congressman was first elected in 2018 when he ousted Republican Rep. Erik Paulsen 56% to 44%, and most recently secured reelection in 2022 by nearly 20 points. Phillips is also a businessman who opened a coffee shop, helped build a gelato company and headed his family’s distillery.
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