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Dean Phillips’ Prairie Home Rebellion

Minnesota congressman Dean Phillips infuriated the White House by brazenly planting his flag in New Hampshire.
Minnesota congressman Dean Phillips infuriated the White House by brazenly planting his flag in New Hampshire. Photo: Gaelen Morse/Getty Images
Peter Hamby
October 30, 2023

Joe Biden’s dismal approval ratings were already a major source of anxiety for Democrats worried about his likely presidential rematch against Donald Trump in 2024. But suddenly, this month, it feels like Biden’s re-election chances are being eaten from within. 

October has brought with it a series of worrisome data points and heated criticisms from progressives, suggesting that Biden is in trouble with his own Democratic voters, even as he coasts (mostly) unchallenged to his party’s nomination next summer in Chicago. Biden’s approval ratings among Democrats have long been softer than they should be, notably among core groups like Black voters and Gen Z—a cohort that was underwhelmed with Biden well before the violence in Israel and Gaza erupted earlier this month. (This is a trend I’ve been documenting all year.) But the president’s stalwart support for Israel has apparently eroded his support even further among Gen Z voters, an age group that’s much more likely to side with the Palestinian cause than older Americans.