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.