Dean Phillips is a first-time congressional candidate in Minnesota’s 3rd District and he’s doing his best to embrace an underdog role.
The Democrat from Minnesota, who is taking on incumbent Republican Erik Paulsen in a competitive race, is running on a platform of accessibility, transparency and bipartisanship. He has positioned himself as the Alvin York-like figure who will come into the battlefield and shoot more accurately than anyone else, and he’s pledged to protect the middle class and fight what he calls Republican corruption.
However, while he has embraced a plucky character, Phillips is not short on appeal. He’s a successful businessman with a personality that translates well on the campaign trail, and he’s already proven to be a formidable fundraiser, having secured more than $2.7 million as of April.
Unfortunately, Phillips is facing an uphill battle in this year’s election, as he is taking on a well-liked Republican incumbent, Erik Paulsen, who has experience representing the district and enjoys relatively high approval ratings among constituents. Additionally, Phillips is running in a district that has a history of going Republican in congressional races and has traditionally supported conservative candidates.
But despite these difficulties, Phillips is embracing his role as the underdog in this race and is running an aggressive campaign that has been effective so far. He’s been traveling throughout the district to meet with constituents and engaging in a variety of debates and forums with Paulsen as well as both Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden and Republican Vice President Mike Pence. Phillips also recently released an ad that features him as a sharpshooter taking on the special interest-driven politics of his opponent.
Whether Phillips will be able to pull off the unlikely victory is yet to be seen. What is certain, however, is that his campaign has been turning heads and gaining momentum.