DemDaily: Making The Debate Stage

August 22, 2023

The first Republican primary debate of the 2024 presidential election is tomorrow night in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, with eight candidates qualifiying for the debate stage.

Former President Donald Trump, citing his overwhelming lead in the polls, said he will not attend the debate. Instead, Trump has prerecorded an interview with former FOX News host Tucker Carlson that is expected to stream on "X," the platform formerly known as Twitter, during the debate.

The Debate Details
Date: August 23, 2023, Wednesday
Time: 9:00pm-11:00pm ET
Location: Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Fiserv Forum
Host Network/Partners: Fox News, Young America’s Foundation
Moderators: Fox Anchors Bret Baier and Martha MacCallum
Live Streaming: Fox, Rumble

Candidates: Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, tech entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy, former Vice President Mike Pence, South Carolina Senator Tim Scott, former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley, former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum and former Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson.

Absent: GOP candidates that did not meet the debate requirements include: Miami Mayor Francis Suarez, former Texas Congressman Will Hurd, Michigan businessman Perry Johnson and conservative radio host Larry Elder.

Qualifications
To qualify for the debate, candidates had to meet the following established by the Republican National Committee:

1) Polling
Poll at least 1% in three national polls OR 1% in two national polls and 1% in one early state poll from two separate “carve out” states (Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada, South Carolina) recognized by the RNC. For a poll to be recognized, it must:
• Survey at least 800 registered likely Republican voters through a mix of live calls, integrated voice response, online panels, and/or text message.
• Not overly weight responses of any individual cohort beyond the margin of the error of the poll.
• Ask the question on presidential preference prior to any question which may allow potential bias.
• Not be conducted by a polling company affiliated with a candidate or candidate committee.
• The polling must have been conducted on or after July 1, 2023.

2) Fundraising
• Have a minimum of 40,000 unique donors to candidate’s principal presidential campaign committee, with at least 200 unique donors per state or territory in 20+ states and/or territories.
• Present the evidence to the RNC no later than 48 hours prior to the first scheduled debate.

3) Candidate Pledge
• Have signed a pledge agreeing not to participate in any non-RNC sanctioned debate for the remainder of the election cycle.
• Have signed pledge agreeing to support the eventual party nominee.
• Have signed RNC data-sharing agreement.
• Pledges and agreement to the RNC must be signed no later than 48 hours prior to the first scheduled debate.

The second debate will take place on Wednesday, September 27, at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, California. The third debate will reportedly take place in October in Alabama, although that has not been confirmed by RNC officials.

Related
DemDaily: Georgia Charges Trump +18 in Criminal Enterprise 8/15/23
DemDaily: The United States v. Donald Trump 8/2/23
DemDaily: The Trials of Trump. Where They Stand 7/31/23
DemDaily: 2nd Quarter Fundraising Positions Presidentials 7/17/23
DemDaily: The Endorsement Game 7/6/23

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Kimberly Scott
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Sources: ABC, AP, CBS, RNC

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