GOP presidential candidates Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) and Carly Fiorina are moving to the undercard debate and won’t be appearing on the main debate stage Thursday night in South Carolina at the GOP debate hosted by Fox Business.
The main stage will be occupied by GOP frontrunner Donald Trump, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL), Dr. Ben Carson, Chris Christie, Jeb Bush and John Kasich, according to Fox Business.
Paul and Fiorina are invited to join Mike Huckabee and Rick Santorum in the undercard debate.
According to Politico, “Paul told CNN Monday evening his exclusion from the main stage was “a mistake,” and he won’t attend the undercard debate.”
“We will not participate in anything that’s not first-tier,” Paul stated.
Following Fox Business’s announcement about the seven candidates making the main stage, Paul issued the following statement:
By any reasonable criteria Senator Paul has a top tier campaign. He will not let the media decide the tiers of this race and will instead take his message directly to the voters of New Hampshire and Iowa.
Multiple national polls including CNN, CBS, Fox, Marist and others have him in 5th or 6th place, one had him just a single point out of 4th. In multiple polls he scores ahead of Jeb Bush, Chris Christie, John Kasich and Carly Fiorona. In yesterday’s Marist Iowa poll he was alone in 5th place. In fact his numbers are on the rise in recent weeks.
Even the pollsters are concerned that the media is using their polls incorrectly. Polls are at best an estimation, and include a standard of error that the media and the RNC are ignoring. A poll number of five is no different than a poll number of 8 if the standard of error is +/- 3. To exclude candidates on faulty analysis is to disenfranchise the voter.
Creating “tiers” based on electoral results of real votes might make sense but creating “tiers” on bad science is irresponsible.
This race is hitting its final stretch and Rand Paul is in it to win it. He is on the ballot in every state. He has over 1000 precinct captains in Iowa and a huge 500 person leadership team in New Hampshire.
He is an important voice and has a unique message to share. He will hit the ground running this week to double down on his efforts to talk straight to the voters. See you in New Hampshire and Iowa.