Dean Phillips

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Dean Phillips
Dean Phillips, official portrait, 116th Congress.jpg
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Minnesota's 3rd district
Assumed office
January 3, 2019
Preceded byErik Paulsen
Personal details
Dean Benson Pfefer

(1969-01-20) January 20, 1969 (age 52)
Saint Paul, Minnesota, U.S.
Political partyDemocratic
Karin Ernisman
(m. 1995; div. 2015)

Annalise Glick
(m. 2019)
EducationBrown University (AB)
University of Minnesota (MBA)
WebsiteHouse website

Dean Benson Phillips[1] (born January 20, 1969)[2] is an American businessman and politician from the state of Minnesota. A Democrat, he is the member of the US House of Representatives from Minnesota's 3rd congressional district, having defeated Republican incumbent Erik Paulsen in the 2018 midterm elections. The district serves most of the western suburbs of the Twin Cities, such as Bloomington, Eden Prairie, Edina, Minnetonka, Maple Grove, Plymouth and Wayzata.

Early life, education, and career[edit]

Phillips was born to DeeDee (Cohen) and Artie Pfefer in 1969.[3] Artie was killed in the Vietnam War when Dean was six months old. DeeDee later married Eddie Phillips, heir to the Phillips Distilling Company and son of advice columnist Pauline Phillips.[4]

Phillips graduated from Brown University in 1991 and is a member of the Sigma Chi fraternity. He worked for bicycle equipment and apparel company InMotion for two years, then joined the family company. He completed his Master of Business Administration from the University of Minnesota in 2000, and was named president of Phillips Distilling.[4] He lives in Deephaven, west of Minneapolis.

U.S. House of Representatives[edit]


Phillips addresses the Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party State Central Committee in 2018
Dean Phillips for Congress campaign booth at the Minnesota State Fair

In the 2018 elections, Phillips ran for the United States House of Representatives in Minnesota's 3rd congressional district.[5] In the Democratic primary Phillips ran against former sales associate Cole Young, and received 81.6% of the vote. Phillips won all 3 counties in the district.[6]

Phillips won the race, defeating incumbent Republican Erik Paulsen with 55.6% of the vote.[7] When he took office in 2019, he became the first Democrat to hold this seat since 1961.


According to the McCourt School of Public Policy at Georgetown University, Phillips held a Bipartisan Index Score of 1.1 in the 116th United States Congress for 2019, which placed him 27th out of 435 members.[8] Based on FiveThirtyEight's congressional vote tracker at ABC News, Phillips voted with Donald Trump's stated public policy positions 5.5% of the time,[9] which ranked him average in the 116th United States Congress when predictive scoring (district partisanship and voting record) is used.[10]

Committee assignments[edit]

Caucus memberships[edit]

Electoral history[edit]

Democratic primary results, 2018
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic (DFL) Dean Phillips 56,697 81.6
Democratic (DFL) Cole Young 12,784 18.4
Total votes 69,481 100.0
Minnesota's 3rd congressional district, 2018
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic (DFL) Dean Phillips 202,402 55.6
Republican Erik Paulsen (incumbent) 160,839 44.2
n/a Write-ins 707 0.2
Total votes 363,948 100
Democratic (DFL) gain from Republican
Democratic primary results, 2020[13]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic (DFL) Dean Phillips (incumbent) 73,011 90.7
Democratic (DFL) Cole Young 7,443 9.3
Total votes 80,454 100.0
Minnesota's 3rd congressional district, 2020[14]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic (DFL) Dean Phillips (incumbent) 246,666 55.6
Republican Kendall Qualls 196,625 44.3
n/a Write-ins 312 0.1
Total votes 443,603 100

Personal life[edit]

Phillips is married and has two daughters from a previous marriage. Phillips is Jewish[15] and was acknowledged by American Jewish World for serving on the board of Temple Israel in Minneapolis.[16]

Phillips's paternal grandmother Pauline Phillips was the author of the advice column "Dear Abby" under the pen name Abigail Van Buren.[17]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "PAGE BY PAGE REPORT DISPLAY FOR 12951451573 (Page 196 of 371)". Retrieved April 1, 2019.
  2. ^ "Candidate Conversation - Dean Phillips (DFL) - News & Analysis - Inside Elections". Retrieved April 1, 2019.
  3. ^ "MN-03: Dean Phillips (D)". November 6, 2018. Retrieved April 1, 2019.
  4. ^ a b Erica Rivera (January 24, 2018). "Can charming liquor heir Dean Phillips beat Erik Paulsen, Minnesota's corporate congressman?". City Pages. Retrieved November 7, 2018.
  5. ^ "Democrat Phillips defeats incumbent Paulsen in Minnesota's Third District". Retrieved November 7, 2018.
  6. ^ "Minnesota Primary Election Results: Third House District". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved February 19, 2019.
  7. ^ "MN Election Results". Office of the Minnesota Secretary of State. Retrieved November 7, 2018.
  8. ^ "The Lugar Center - McCourt School Bipartisan Index House Scores 116th Congress First Session (2019)" (PDF). Georgetown University. Retrieved May 20, 2020.
  9. ^ "Tracking Congress In The Age Of Trump - Dean Phillips". ABC News. Retrieved May 20, 2020.
  10. ^ "Tracking Congress In The Age Of Trump". ABC News. Retrieved May 20, 2020.
  11. ^ "Members". New Democrat Coalition. Archived from the original on February 8, 2018. Retrieved February 5, 2018.
  12. ^
  13. ^ "Unofficial Results Tuesday, August 11, 2020". Minnesota Secretary of State. Retrieved August 16, 2020.
  14. ^ "Unofficial Results Tuesday, November 3, 2020". Minnesota Secretary of State. Retrieved January 1, 2021.
  15. ^ "Dean Phillips & The Road To November 2018". May 30, 2017. Retrieved April 1, 2019.
  16. ^ "Dear Abby asked Dean Phillips for advice". July 25, 2018. Retrieved April 1, 2019.
  17. ^ Alberta, Tim. "The Democrats' Dilemma". Retrieved April 1, 2019.

External links[edit]

U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by
Erik Paulsen
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Minnesota's 3rd congressional district

U.S. order of precedence (ceremonial)
Preceded by
Greg Pence
United States Representatives by seniority
Succeeded by
Katie Porter