GOP presidential candidate Ted Cruz spoke to reporters in Cleveland about running a “populist campaign of working men and women” to win voters in Ohio and nationally. Cruz also blamed voter frustration on the “bipartisan corruption of Washington that…is embodied by Hillary Clinton.”
Hours away from the first Republican debate, the Democratic National Committee announced its long-awaited debate schedule for its own candidates, which will include six debates ranging from October to March.
CNN will host the first debate on October 13 in Nevada, one of the four early primary states. The second debate will take place in Iowa in early November with CBS News, The Des Moines Register and KCCI as hosts, which will be followed by a Christmas showdown in New Hampshire on December 19 by ABC News/WMUR.
NBC News and the Congressional Black Caucus Institute will host the fourth debate on January 17 in South Carolina. Tensions and excitement will be at a peak during this event, as it is the final debate before the state nomination season officially begins with the Iowa caucuses on February 1 and the New Hampshire primary on February 9. Finally, there will be two debates hosted sometime in February and March. One will be hosted by Univision and the Washington Post in Miami, Florida and the other in Wisconsin by PBS.
There are currently five Democratic candidates pursuing the nomination: Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, former Virginia Senator Jim Webb and former Rhode Island Governor Lincoln Chafee. However, the DNC welcomes any new candidate who wishes to enter the race, as long as they meet the criteria of receiving at least 1% in three national polls in the six weeks leading up to the debate.
In an interview with WHCInsider.com before the first debate featuring GOP presidential candidates in the 2016 election, the Republican National Committee’s Sean Spicer gave a preview of what to expect at the largest debate in primary history when 17 candidates take the stage.
Spicer also commented on the timing of the Democrat’s debate announcement today. “They’ve got a lot of concern within their own party…with what the DNC has done to help Hillary Clinton out. I think they tried to bury this today for obvious reasons.”
When asked about the additional debate added for candidates who didn’t make the cut for the main debate: “It wasn’t our decision. We had talked to both Fox and CNN about how to be really inclusive in both of the early debates because of the historic number of quality candidates that we had in our field. Fox and CNN said they were going to try and figure out a way to do that.”
Spicer noted that close to 5,000 people will be in attendance, “probably the largest debate audience in history. Folks from Ohio, Republican supporters, friends and family of the candidates. It’s kind of a cross-section.” Audience members will not be allowed to ask questions.