Minnesota Rep. Dean Phillips Says He Won’t Seek Reelection Amid 2024 Run

Phillips last month announced that he’ll challenge Joe Biden for the Democratic presidential nomination.
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U.S. Rep. Dean Phillips (D-Minn.) has announced that he won’t seek reelection, with the decision coming a month after he shared plans to challenge Joe Biden for the Democratic presidential nomination.

“It’s time to pass the torch, it’s time for change, and our best days are yet to come!” he said in a social media post on Friday.

A spokesperson confirmed that he is continuing his presidential campaign. The 54-year-old was first elected to Congress in 2018 and is in his third term, which will end in January 2025.

Phillips has expressed great admiration for Biden, 80, but has argued that he’s too old for a second term.

U.S. Rep. Dean Phillips (D-Minn.) holds a rally outside of the New Hampshire Statehouse on October 27 after handing over his declaration of candidacy for president.
U.S. Rep. Dean Phillips (D-Minn.) holds a rally outside of the New Hampshire Statehouse on October 27 after handing over his declaration of candidacy for president.
Gaelen Morse via Getty Images

“He’s a president of great competence and success, I admire the heck out of President Biden,” Phillips told Politico in February. “And if he were 15-20 years younger it would be a no-brainer to nominate him, but considering his age it’s absurd we’re not promoting competition but trying to extinguish it.”

Phillips has cited polls that show former President Donald Trump leading Biden.

Phillips is a long-shot candidate himself, with him significantly trailing behind Biden for the Democratic presidential nomination. Fellow Democratic primary challenger Marianne Williamson was two points ahead of Phillips in a recent Real Clear Politics poll.

The Minnesota Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party was among those thanking Phillips for his years in public office in response to his news on Friday, while also pledging support to Biden.

“We appreciate Dean’s service and his 100% voting record supporting President Biden’s historic record of accomplishments,” said DFL Party Chairman Ken Martin in a statement.

“There are a number of talented DFLers who would be great representatives for Minnesota’s third district and who understand the importance of reelecting President Biden and keeping this seat in DFL hands. I’m confident we will have a strong and loyal nominee for the DFL Party at the conclusion of the process.”

Phillips has faced criticism in recent days after telling The Atlantic that he’s heard people who “know” Vice President Kamala Harris say that she’s not the right person for office.

“She is not well prepared, doesn’t have the right disposition and the right competencies to execute that office,” he said, while later adding in his interview that he has personally “not seen those deficiencies.”

He later issued an apology, saying he shouldn’t have referenced other people’s opinions.

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