With poll numbers cratering amid a drastic loss of support among members of his own party, President Joe Biden is now facing a primary challenger in his bid for re-election.
Minnesota Rep. Dean Phillips will now square off against Biden for the Democratic presidential nomination and is launching his 2024 campaign in New Hampshire on Oct. 27.
“I am. I have to,” Phillips told CBS News chief election & campaign correspondent Robert Costa regarding his late entry into the presidential race.
“I think President Biden has done a spectacular job for our country,” Phillips said. “But it’s not about the past. This is an election about the future.”
The announcement will come on the heels of a Gallup poll showing that Biden’s approval rating among Democrats has tumbled 11 points over the past month to 75 percent, the worst numbers of his presidency from his own party. His overall approval rating dropped 4 points and now sits at 37 percent — another personal low.
An AP-NORC poll released earlier in the year shows that roughly two-thirds of Democrats want someone other than Biden to run.
“I will not sit still and 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 said, while explaining that he believes Biden will lose to former President Donald Trump.
Phillips has represented Minnesota’s 3rd congressional district since 2019, having defeated six-term Republican incumbent Erik Paulsen. He previously served as president and CEO of his family’s liquor business, the Phillips Distilling Company.
The White House has been dismissive about the announcement, explaining that Phillips, 54, is strikingly similar to Biden, 80, on policy.
“When it comes to President Biden’s official work, the administration appreciates that Congressman Phillips has voted for nearly 100% of the president’s legislative agenda,” said White House spokesperson Andrew Bates.
Earlier this month, Phillips said he was stepping down from congressional caucuses to focus on his run for president.
I have decided to step down from the DPCC & Democratic Caucus leadership. While politics & official work do not mix, it’s clear my convictions about 2024 are incongruent with the position of my colleagues & that was causing discomfort. I was not pressured or forced to resign. 1/2
— Rep. Dean Phillips 🇺🇸 (@RepDeanPhillips) October 1, 2023