4th Debate News

The DNC announced last week that CNN, in partnership with the New York Times, will host the fourth Democratic Presidential Primary Debate at Otterbein University in Westerville, OH.

This debate may occur over consecutive nights in prime time to accommodate a large field of qualifying candidates, with the first night on October 15 and the potential second night on October 16. This is happening because the same polling and donor criteria used for the third debate apply, but candidates have an additional month to get there.

The debate will be moderated by CNN’s Anderson Cooper and Erin Burnett and Marc Lacey of The New York Times. Further information on format and additional information will be forthcoming.

To qualify candidates needed donations from 130,000 people spread over 20 states with at least 400 unique donors from each of those states AND show 2% support in 4 “qualifying polls.” 

qualifying polls defined
. A candidate needed to get at least two percent support in four different polls published from a list of approved pollsters between June 28 and August 28, which cannot be based on open-ended questions and may cover either the national level or one of the first four primary/caucus states (Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada, and South Carolina). Only one poll from each approved pollster counted towards meeting the criterion in each region. The approved pollsters were the Associated PressABC NewsCBS NewsCNNThe Des Moines RegisterFox NewsMonmouth UniversityNBC NewsThe New York TimesNational Public RadioQuinnipiac University, the University of New HampshireUSA TodayThe Wall Street JournalThe Washington Post, and Winthrop University. In contrast to the first two debates, polls published/sponsored by the Las Vegas Review-Journal and Reuters no longer counted towards meeting the criterion.

Postscript: Fifth Debate News — Coming Up in November

9.24.2019: Confused? The 4th Debate hasn’t happened yet and the news is already covering the 5th debate. That won’t happen until November, so we’ll write more about it as the time approaches. Just be aware that the criteria for qualification will change a bit, with a slightly higher bar. The DNC again raises the requirements needed to qualify for the Democratic debates, USA Today.

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