Dean Phillips (DFL) becomes the first Democratic representative from Minnesota’s Third District since 1960 as he defeats Rep. Erik Paulsen (R). He greets a joyful crowd at the Minneapolis Hilton in Bloomington, Minnesota. He promises a new beginning in Washington as he thanks, staff, family and thousands of supporters.
Video above: Dean Phillips victory speech
Video below: Supporters celebrate Phillips victory
Several thousand people jammed the ballroom of the Minneapolis Hilton in Bloomington Hotel on the night of the general election hoping to celebrate Dean Phillip’s victory as the new member of Congress from CD 3.
Interviews with attendees showed a high level of confidence and after results were announced high levels of joy. Phillips handily ousted the incumbent Erik Paulsen by 55.6% to 44.2%.
Phillips waged an aggressive campaign beginning in July 2017. He refused all PAC contributions and he refused all contributions from other members of Congress. He failed in repeated attempts to get Paulsen to sign the same pledge. Phillip’s campaign was financed by mostly small contributions from 67,000 volunteers plus a personal loan the last week of the campaign to combat being outspent about 5 to 1. PAC money poured in to the district making it one of the most expensive house races in the country. Paulsen ran many ads that were debunked as lies by outside adjudicates. Phillips had a Government Repair Truck (a 1960 van in honor of the year the last time a Democrat has won this seat), a Government Repair Pontoon Boat and a Government Repair Ice House that became a shack towed around the district.
Phillips amassed a crew of 2,000 volunteers who blanketed the district.
Party goers, some former Republicans, had many reasons for supporting Phillips ranging from Paulsen’s lack of accessibility to Philips positions on health care, gun control, campaign finance and transparency.