Ten Democratic presidential candidates will be heading to Atlanta on Thursday, November 20, to square off in the fifth primary debate, the Democratic National Committee announced.
ABC News reports the MSNBC/Washington Post co-hosted debate will be held among the top-ten candidates from 9 p.m. to 11 p.m. It will feature former Vice President and current frontrunner Joe Biden, as well as Senator Bernie Sanders, Senator Elizabeth Warren, South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg, Senator Amy Klobuchar, entrepreneur Andrew Yang, Senator Kamala Harris, Hawaii Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard, Senator Cory Booker, and billionaire businessman Tom Steyer.
According to the report, the threshold for qualifying for the debates are continuing to rise as the pack expects to thin. Since the last televised debate, former Congressman Beto O’Rourke ended his presidential bid while billionaire Michael Bloomberg and former Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick entered the race.
ABC News reports: “Candidates had until Wednesday at 11:59 p.m. to qualify, and the DNC has upped the ante for this debate, requiring candidates to secure both 165,000 individual donors and either four polls from a DNC-approved list of sponsors with at least 3% support or two polls from any of the early voting states — Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada and South Carolina — with at least 5% support.”
The rising qualifications will cause former Obama administration official Julian Castro to miss out on the debate for the first time during the primary process. Senator Michael Bennet, Governor Steve Bullock, spiritual guru Marianne Williamson, and former Congressmen John Delaney and Joe Sestak will also miss the debate.
ABC News adds:
Having only announced his candidacy Thursday, former Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick wasn’t in the running to potentially find himself among the candidates who’ve been campaigning for months now. He faces an uphill battle to garner support quickly if he wants to join them on stage for the Dec. 20 debate, which is being held at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles.
The thresholds that candidates have to meet to qualify are even higher than they were for November’s debate. Candidates must have at least 200,000 unique donors, and a minimum of 800 individual donors per state in at least 20 states. Additionally, they must get at least 4% support in four national polls or polls out of Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada and/or South Carolina that are conducted by a sponsor on a list determined by the DNC, or get at least 6% support in two early state polls. While the two early state polls at 6% support can be conducted in the same state and by the same organization, for the four polls at 4% support to count, the polls must be sponsored by different organizations or if sponsored by the same organization, must represent a different geographical region.
Only six candidates have so-far qualified for the December debate.