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Phillips says he’s open to being Haley VP on ‘unity ticket’

Rep. Dean Phillips (D-Minn.), who has mounted a long-shot primary challenge to President Biden, said Thursday he is open to being on a unity ticket with GOP presidential primary candidate Nikki Haley.

“I think it’s a conversation that Ambassador Haley and I should have, if that’s what this comes down to,” Phillips said in a Thursday interview on Minneapolis’s News Talk 830 WCCO, first highlighted by Mediaite.

Phillips said “in the event of a Donald Trump victory this November,” he thinks “any American who opposes that, should celebrate, encourage and inspire an alternative that can actually win and lead our country in the way that people want, and I think anybody, including myself, should keep open minds and hearts about that.”

“I hope Nikki Haley does, and I think America could be very well served by some type of a bipartisan ticket that restores faith in government and most importantly, demonstrates to the world — to the world — that America can work together and restore its extraordinary brand around the entire world,” Phillips said.

The Minnesota Democrat launched a campaign against Biden that has centered on the president’s age and argued the incumbent is too great a risk to lose in November. Phillips has repeatedly argued that Democrats should nominate someone else to improve their chances.

But Phillips has won little traction with his bid and was defeated by Biden handily in the South Carolina primary.

Haley appears to have little chance of overtaking Trump in the GOP primary, but like Phillips has criticized her party’s front-runner and Biden while arguing for a new generation of U.S. leaders.

While speaking in her home state of South Carolina ahead of the Republican primary there this week, Haley hit Biden and Trump on their age and mental acuity, saying they were “at risk for dementia” and are “dividers.”

“Trump and Biden are two old men who are only getting older. Nearly 60 percent of Americans say Trump and Biden are both too old to be president. Because they are,” Haley said.

“Joe Biden is doing more damage to himself than any Republican ever could,” she said. “The Democrats are getting weaker by holding a coronation for Biden. Republicans will get stronger through a vigorous competition.”

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