Phillips undecided on presidential run, calls for Biden challenger

Phillips said he is "well positioned" to be president but is not "well positioned to run for it right now."

Rep. Dean Phillips appears on "Face the Nation" Sunday. (CBS/YouTube)

U.S. Rep. Dean Phillips said he has not made a decision yet on a possible run for president but believes more candidates should step up to challenge President Joe Biden in the Democratic primary.

Phillips, a third-term Democrat from Minnesota, said members of his party want a “competition,” not a “coronation” of the 80-year-old incumbent.

“If we don’t heed that call, shame on us. And the consequences, I believe, are going to be disastrous. So my call is to those who are well positioned, well prepared, have good character and competency, they know who they are, to jump in, because Democrats and the country need competition. It makes everything better. That’s my call to them right now,” Phillips said on CBS’ “Face the Nation” Sunday.

Phillips reportedly met with donors in New York City last week about a potential presidential bid amid concerns over Biden’s age and approval ratings. In his “Face the Nation” interview, Phillips maintained that Biden is a man of “unvarnished” integrity who could beat former President Donald Trump in a general election.

But he was highly critical of third-party candidate Cornell West who could “take votes” away from the Democratic Party’s nominee.

He was also asked if he thinks Vice President Kamala Harris is qualified to succeed Biden.

“I think she’s absolutely qualified. In fact, I think she’s misportrayed. I think everybody in this country should take a little bit of time and sit with people, observe them, [get to] know them before you draw conclusions. I think she is more competent and able than many people give her credit for. The job of the Vice President is not an easy one,” he responded.

Phillips first called for a Biden alternative in July 2022 in an interview with a local radio station when he said “the country would be well served by a new generation of compelling, well-prepared, dynamic Democrats.”

Earlier this year, he claimed there are other members of his party who agree with him but are scared to speak out.

“My answer is really simple: competition. As many people as humanly possible with the talent, the time, the energy, the ethics to enter a primary should do it,” Phillips said Sunday. “We have 12 Republicans as options for Republican primary voters. Right now, we only have three on the Democratic side. I believe in competition. We’re the Democratic Party. Democracy means the freedom to make choices, and we don’t have many of them.”


Anthony Gockowski

Anthony Gockowski is Editor-in-Chief of Alpha News. He previously worked as an editor for The Minnesota Sun and Campus Reform, and wrote for the Daily Caller.