‘Sliding scale’ polling threshold to join 2016 Republican debates
Following news that the Republican National Committee (RNC) has laid out the 2016 GOP debate schedule, we’re now getting some details about the rules of participating in the upcoming events.
Report from The Hill:
Reince Priebus, Republican National Committee chairman, says that potential presidential contenders will have to poll above certain levels to earn a spot in the GOP debates.
In a radio interview on the “Hugh Hewitt Show” Monday, the conservative host asked Priebus how the debates would work if there were 20 candidates vying to be heard.
“You can’t,” Priebus said. “You can’t do 20 people. … You have to have certain thresholds in place, so you have to be at 1 percent of the vote in Iowa, and that threshold can move like a slide rule based on the proximity to the Iowa caucus and New Hampshire primaries, just like it did before.” [Emphasis added]
Priebus said the thresholds would be determined in coordination between the RNC and the media outlet conducting the debate and that none of the minimum requirements had yet been set.
Candidate thresholds for debates are nothing new, but could be a critical component of the Republican primaries in 2016, as the GOP is expected to field a large and diverse field of candidates.
A Gravis poll in Iowa released last week showed each of nine candidates getting at least 4 percent support in the Hawkeye State. A Fox News poll of Iowa conducted in late 2014 showed 13 candidates getting at least 1 percent support there.
Based on those initial, numbers, we could still be seeing as many as a dozen candidates on stage at the first few debates. Of course, polling could change if a handful of candidates begin consolidating support.
On another note, Democratic National Committee, I’m looking in your direction. Can we get some details about debates?