Dean Phillips vows to keep going after significant campaign layoffs: ‘I’m not giving up’

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Democratic presidential candidate Rep. Dean Phillips (Minn.) announced significant layoffs within his campaign Friday, but vowed to continue his long-shot bid against President Biden.

“I found it almost impossible to raise enough to do this campaign the way I want,” Phillips said. “And today, sadly, I had to announce layoffs to a lot of my staff members… amazing people who gave up a lot personally and a lot professionally to join this remarkable campaign,” Phillips said in a TikTok posted Friday to his X account, formerly Twitter. “And it was a really tough day for all of us.”

“But I made a promise to them and I’m gonna make it to you, I’m not giving up,” he added. “I’m gonna continue.”

In his X post, Phillips called on supporters to donate so he could stay in the race — claiming a majority of Americans believe Biden is “too old” and the GOP front-runner, former President Trump, is “to corrupt.”

His comment on the president comes after negative press surrounding a damning special counsel report on Biden’s handling of classified documents. While no charges were brought against the incumbent, Special Counsel Robert Hur painted Biden as an old man as an “elderly man with a poor memory.”

Phillips defended Biden as a “decent man” after the report’s release, calling it a “sad day” in an interview with Fox News. But, he did not denounce concerns over Biden’s age.

“I respect him, but that’s the problem. And by the way, Donald Trump? Not that far behind him,” Phillips said Friday, referencing the ages of Biden and Trump, 81 and 77 respectively.

“Seventy-seven percent of the country wants to move on from this chapter,” he added. “We have two presidents — a former president, the current president, that frankly, people have lost faith in.”

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Ezra Klein, a columnist and podcast host for The New York Times, made a similar argument in a Friday episode of his Times podcast “The Ezra Klein Show.”

Klein stated that while he appreciated Biden’s achievements while in office, like the Inflation Reduction Act, the president has been trailing in the polls and pointed to the recent bad press over his special counsel report as reason for him to leave the 2024 race.

“To say this is a media invention, that people are worried about Biden’s age because the media keeps telling them to be worried about Biden’s age?” Klein said.

“If you’ve really convinced yourself of that, in your heart of hearts, I almost don’t know what to tell you,” he added. “In poll after poll, 70 percent to 80 percent of voters are worried about his age. This is not a thing people need the media to see.”

Instead, he suggested Biden should step aside and make room for the next generation of Democrats.

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