Democrats Who May Not Make Debate Stage Slam DNC Requirements

The Associated Press
The Associated Press

As the Wednesday deadline to qualify for the next Democrat debate in September looms, some candidates are complaining about the DNC’s rules.

The bar the DNC has set for candidates to make it to the debate stage in Houston includes 130,000 unique individual donors and getting two percent support in four polls the committee deemed “qualifying.”

“The DNC’s process is stifling debate at a time when we need it most,” Sen. Michael Bennet (D-CO) said in the Fox News report.

“These DNC debate rules have turned this primary into the ‘The Hunger Games’ — each step of this seems to be all about getting donors,” Montana Governor Steve Bullock said. 

Billionaire Tom Steyer, who is just one poll short of qualifying, also is criticizing the DNC’s requirements, Fox News reported:

Steyer’s campaign on Friday called on the DNC “to expand their polling criteria to include more qualifying polling, including at least one poll in Nevada before the deadline next week. As a party, we want to ensure the will of the voters is respected.”

Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI) needs two more polls to make it to the debate stage. Her campaign has asked the DNC to “revise their list of debate qualifying polls in light of numerous irregularities in the selection and timing of those polls, to ensure transparency and fairness.”

Gabbard’s campaign said the candidate had received two percent support in 26 polls but only two make the DNC grade, Fox News reported.

The ten candidates who will be on the debate stage are Vice President Joe Biden; South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg, Julian Castro; Sens. Kamala Harris (D-CA), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Bernie Sanders (D-VT), Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), and Cory Booker (D-NJ); Beto O’Rourke, and tech entrepreneur Andrew Yang.

Yang told Fox News, “I’m a little bit biased because I’m making the fall debates so I think the rules are fine…I think the DNC has been very fair and open and transparent.”

“The rules have been out there for us all to see for months and if you were going to complain about the criteria, you would probably want to complain about it a little bit earlier in the process to make it seem like it’s not purely self-interested.”

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