Long-shot Democratic presidential candidate Dean Phillips (D-MN) was mocked on Christmas after a post on X where he asked potential voters to “imagine waking-up January 21, 2025 with a President who grew up listening to U2 and watching MTV on a color television.”
Phillips, who’s polling at 10% in New Hampshire according to a University of New Hampshire poll last month, launched his campaign at the end of October, campaigning as a supporter of Biden who nevertheless believes that the president is too old to win reelection against the likely Republican nominee Donald Trump.
Phillips, who was first elected in 2018, flipped a long-time Republican House seat blue and quickly began mixing with Democratic Party leadership. He was elected one of three co-chairs of the Democratic Policy and Communications Committee last year.
Since launching his primary campaign, though, his reputation has plummeted in the Democratic Party, where members worry that his attacks on Biden’s age echo Trump’s own rhetoric and could damage Biden in the general election, according to reporting by Axios.
“Dean Phillips is not going to win any primary. I think he’s not helpful to the country,” former House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) told Axios.
Phillips has also criticized Biden and the Democratic Party after state parties circled their wagons around the incumbent’s reelection campaign. In Florida, the state party made Biden the only candidate on their ballot.
Phillips said “yes” earlier this month to a reporter asking him if he thinks Biden is a threat to democracy, reported the Washington Post.
“President Biden is running against an actual real live threat to democracy,” Sen. Tina Smith (D-Minn.) told the Post. “A person who literally just said yesterday he would be a dictator on Day One. And Dean Phillips is saying the candidate for president — who he by the way voted with 100 percent of the time or thereabouts — is a threat to democracy? It sounds desperate.”
“Desperate” was how most people reacted to Phillips’ tweet telling voters that he grew up listening to U2 and watching MTV in color.
“This might be the most desperate post you’ve ever made. Sad,” said @travisakers, posting a gif of the Steve Buscemi How Do You Do, Fellow Kids? meme.
“Perfect meme,” replied @flyfishmich. “Even though I started listening to U2 before they were cool, I don’t think I even qualify for class president, much less POTUS.”
Plenty of posters agreed, rationing Phillips’ post.
“I’d rather wake up with a president with experience that actually qualifies him for the job. I watched MTV, too, but I wouldn’t put it on my resume,” commented @Leslieoo7.
“I said the same thing,” added @MerrittKelly1. “It’s not a damn qualification!”
Others still questioned the efficacy of appealing to young voters by sharing nostalgia for the 80s, which were already over three decades ago.
“80’s nostalgia to appeal to the youths of America is a bold move,” posted @Kathlee71013772.
“Lol…” added @dizzygirl812. “this guy thinking he could appeal to Gen X with this bullshit.”