RAMASWAMY WANTS ONLY 4 REPUBLICAN CANDIDATES
Washington: Indian-American entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy’s campaign has asked the Republican National Committee (RNC) to limit the number of presidential candidates on stage for the party’s next presidential primary debate in Miami on November 8. In a letter to RNC Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel, the presidential aspirant has asked the party to allow only top four candidates in national polling, aside from former President Donald Trump, to be allowed onto the debate stage, CBS News reported.
“Another unhelpful debate in November is not an option,” Ben Yoho, the CEO of Ramaswamy’s campaign, wrote in the letter. “Voters are not well-served when a cacophony of candidates with minimal chance of success talk over each other from the edge of the stage, while the overwhelming frontrunner is absent from the center of that same stage,” he added.
Yoho also called for the donor threshold to be raised to 100,000 unique donors -- up from the 70,000-donor threshold in the RNC’s current debate criteria. He requested “greater time for candidates to respond to their competitors”, and for a single debate moderator “who is able to enforce debate rules and avoid candidates indiscernibly shouting over each other”.
Including Ramaswamy, the last primary debate in September had seven candidates -- former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, South Carolina Senator Tim Scott, former Vice President Mike Pence, former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie and North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum.
According to the RNC, to qualify for the third debate, candidates will have to register a minimum of 4 per cent support in two national polls or one national poll and two state-wide surveys in early-voting states, and also have to show they have at least 70,000 unique donors. Trump, DeSantis, Ramaswamy and Haley appear to have met the qualifications for the third debate stage, according to a tracker by Politico.
An average of national polls compiled by FiveThirtyEight shows that Trump remains the strongest challenger with 54.8 per cent votes, followed by DeSantis and Ramaswamy. Chris LaCivita, a Trump campaign adviser, told CBS News that the former President will skip the third debate as well.