When is the second Republican primary debate and who is in it?

22:57 18.09.2023 - Reuters, Tim Reid

At least six Republican candidates will take part in the second 2024 Republican presidential debate on Sept. 27 in California. Donald Trump will skip the event and give a speech in Detroit to autoworkers.

Here are some facts about the event and what to expect:


Following on from last month's debate in Wisconsin,

The second showdown will take place at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation & Institute in Simi Valley, California, about 45 miles (72 km) north of Los Angeles.

The Republican National Committee, which organizes the debates, has picked the Fox Business Network to host the event, alongside Univision, the U.S.-based Spanish language TV channel, and Rumble, the online video platform popular with conservatives. The two-hour debate will start at 9 p.m. ET (0100 GMT).


The qualifying rules for the second debate are more stringent than the first last month, when eight candidates were on stage in Milwaukee. This means two long-shot contenders - North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum and former Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson - will likely fail to make the cut due to a lack of donors and poor polling.

Former President Donald Trump, the runaway front-runner in the nominating contest according to opinion polls, has said he will skip the debates, and did not appear at the first one.

As he did in August, Trump will hold a rival event at the same time as the debate. He will give a speech in Detroit to autoworkers and other blue-collar workers. The United Auto Workers (UAW) union on Friday at three U.S. auto plants after failing to reach an agreement over new contracts, the first-ever simultaneous labor action against the Detroit Three automakers.

The six candidates likely to be on stage are: Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, former Vice President Mike Pence, former U.N. ambassador and South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley, U.S. Senator Tim Scott of South Carolina, biotech investor Vivek Ramaswamy, and former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie.

With a smaller lineup, there will be more time for each candidate to attack each other and make their pitches to voters. It also gives them more opportunity to shine or self-destruct.


DeSantis, who was seen in January as the most likely candidate to topple Trump, has had a torrid year, with sinking poll numbers and two staff shake-ups. Once the clear second-place candidate behind Trump, DeSantis' campaign has floundered as some other candidates closed the gap with him in recent polls.

The Florida governor delivered a solid, if not flashy, performance in last month's debate but was frequently overshadowed by Ramaswamy. DeSantis will be looking for some breakout moments this time around to rejuvenate his candidacy.


With Trump currently crushing his rivals by roughly 40 percentage points in national polls, the Republican nominating contest has become a fight for second place. His rivals hope the former president's four criminal indictments and legal woes will somehow knock him out of the race next year, giving an alternative nominee the chance to emerge.

After Ramaswamy's pugnacious performance in the August debate, expect to see more attacks on him and his lack of experience, especially by Haley and Pence, both of whom had strong outings last month.

Like DeSantis, Scott also needs a more forceful night after his subdued one last month. The Haley-Ramaswamy-Scott-Pence scramble to overtake DeSantis and become the clear alternative to Trump will likely be a major dynamic.


Do not expect to see most candidates - with the exception of Christie - going after Trump for his indictments and the fact he is now the first former president with a mug shot. Many Republican primary voters believe Trump's claim that the indictments are an effort by the Biden administration to thwart his candidacy, and attacking him on the issue would likely be political suicide.

With the Republican-controlled House of Representatives launching a formal impeachment inquiry into President Joe Biden over alleged links to the business practices of his son Hunter Biden, expect to see a barrage of accusations against the Democratic president, an issue that plays well with the Republican base despite the dearth of evidence unearthed so far.


The inclusion of Univision as a debate host is telling. Republican support among Latinos, an increasingly key voting bloc in some key battleground states, including Arizona and Nevada, has been growing in recent years, while Hispanic support for Biden has been dropping. Expect to see candidates asked about the economy and how they plan to improve the financial prospects for Latino families.

/ Monday, September 18, 2023, 10:57 PM /

themes:  Los Angeles  Detroit  Joe Biden  Donald Trump  California  Florida  Michigan  New Jersey  Arizona  Wisconsin  South Carolina  Nevada  Arkansas  North Dakota

When is the second Republican debate, and who has qualified for it?

When is the second Republican debate?

The second Republican primary debate will be held Sept. 27 at 9 p.m. ET, at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library, in Simi Valley, California.

Fox Business, along with Univision, will moderate the second debate, and the conservative online video platform Rumble will also stream it.

What are the requirements to qualify for the debate?

The threshold for the second debate is higher than it was for the first. Candidates must poll at 3% in two national polls or 3% in one national poll and 3% in one early state poll from two separate early-voting states - Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada, South Carolina - recognized by the Republican National Committee. For the first debate, the polling requirement was 1% in the same poll categories.

Polls must have been conducted on or after Aug. 1, and candidates have until 48 hours before the debate to meet the polling requirement.

Candidates will also need to have a minimum of 50,000 unique donors to their principal presidential campaign committee or exploratory committee, with at least 200 unique donors per state or territory in more than 20 states and/or territories. That's an increase of 10,000 unique donors over the 40,000 required to make it onstage for the first primary debate.

Who has qualified for the second debate?

The RNC has not yet released its list of participants, but so far, it looks likely that former President Donald Trump, entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamey, former Ambassador to the U.N. and South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley, former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, former Vice President Mike Pence, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott are likely to have qualified.

Former Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson and North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum appear not to have qualified yet.

Who's moderating the debate?

Stuart Varney and Dana Perino, of Fox News, will moderate the debate, with Univision's Ilia Calderón.

Does Trump plan to attend?

Former President Donald Trump did not attend the first debate, and instead sat for an interview with Tucker Carlson that streamed at the same time the debate aired. Here's what he said about why he didn't participate: "You see the polls have come out, I'm leading by 50 and 60 points. And some of them are at one and zero and two. And I'm saying, 'Do I sit there for an hour or two hours, whatever it's going to be and get harassed by people that shouldn't even be running for president? Should I be doing that? And a network that isn't particularly friendly, frankly.'"

If this continues to be his criteria - an overwhelming lead in the polls - it seems likely that he will also skip the second debate, but he has so far not said whether he intends to participate.

Trump has also not signed the RNC's "loyalty pledge" to support the candidate who wins the Republican nomination.

Second Republican Candidate Debate: Date, Time, and Participants Revealed

The second Republican presidential debate is set to take place on September 27 at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation and Institute in Simi Valley, California. The event will be hosted by Fox News Media's Stuart Varney and Dana Perino, alongside Univision's Ilia Calder??n. This debate follows the first one in Milwaukee in August, where political newcomer Vivek Ramaswamy dominated the stage. Despite Donald Trump's absence, he claimed victory by publishing an interview with Tucker Carlson that garnered over 100 million views.

The debate will be broadcasted on Fox Business, with simultaneous broadcasts on Fox News and availability on Fox Nation. It will also be livestreamed on Rumble, a video-sharing service popular among conservatives, as well as on Univision. California, a traditionally Democratic stronghold, will be the location for this Republican debate, adding an interesting dynamic to the event.

Seven candidates have qualified to participate in the debate according to the Republican National Committee's threshold. However, Donald Trump has declared that he will not be attending any of the debates, even though he easily meets the qualifications. The candidates who have qualified include Florida governor Ron DeSantis, former UN ambassador Nikki Haley, senator Tim Scott, former vice president Mike Pence, multi-millionaire entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy, and former New Jersey governor Chris Christie. Each candidate must sign a pledge certifying their support for the eventual Republican nominee to participate in the RNC debates.

The upcoming debate will feature fewer candidates compared to the first one, as the qualifying rules are more stringent. ..... Furthermore, it is no surprise that Donald Trump will skip the debates once again, as he did not attend the first one either. There have been speculations that Trump may hold a rival event at the same time as the debate.

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, who was initially seen as a strong contender to challenge Trump, has faced a challenging year with decreasing poll numbers and staff changes. He will be looking for a breakout performance in this debate to revitalize his campaign. On the other hand, Vivek Ramaswamy, who had a strong presence in the previous debate, can expect to be attacked by his rivals due to his lack of experience. Nikki Haley and Mike Pence, who delivered solid performances last month, are likely to lead the criticism against Ramaswamy. Tim Scott, who had a subdued performance in the first debate, will also aim for a more forceful night.

It is expected that most candidates, except for Chris Christie, will not go after Trump regarding his indictments and legal issues, as Republican primary voters believe they are politically motivated. Instead, candidates will likely focus on attacking President Joe Biden, especially considering the Republican-controlled House of Representatives launching a formal impeachment inquiry into Biden over alleged ties to his son Hunter Biden's business practices.

 ..... Republican support among Latinos has been growing, particularly in key battleground states like Arizona and Nevada. ..... 

Overall, the second Republican presidential debate promises to be an intense and crucial event for the candidates as they vie for attention and support on the debate stage.

When is the second Republican candidate debate? Start time and how to watch


The Republican presidential hopefuls are set to go head-to-head on the debate stage for a second time in Simi Valley, California.


And even though Donald Trump didn't attend the event, he claimed victory over the night after publishing a coinciding interview with Tucker Carlson that received more than 100 million views.

This time around, Ron DeSantis and the other candidates are sure to want to steal back a slice of the spotlight.


That is September 28, 2am BST for UK viewers.

California is considered a Democratic stronghold and has remained a blue state for decades.

Where to watch the debate

Viewers in the US can watch the debate on Fox Business. The debate simulcasts on Fox News and is also available on Fox Nation.


Who is attending?

Seven candidates have so far met the Republican National Committee's threshold to appear on the debate stage.


A condition of participating in the RNC debates is that each candidate signs a pledge certifying that they will support the eventual Republican nominee.

When is the second Republican candidate debate? Start time and how to watch


The Republican presidential hopefuls are set to go head-to-head on the debate stage for a second time in Simi Valley, California.


What is Trump doing instead?

On Tuesday it was reported that Mr Trump will skip the debate to deliver a speech in front of union workers in Detroit.

The talk in Michigan is expected to take place in the prime-time slot, advisers told The New York Times.

In August Mr Trump said he would not be attending the primary debates. "The public knows who I am & what a successful Presidency I had," he wrote on Truth Social. "I will therefore not be doing the debates."

While the last debate was taking place Mr Trump released a pre-recorded interview with conservative commentator and former Fox anchor Tucker Carlson instead.

Second Republican Debate: Date, Time, and Participants Revealed

The stage is set for the second Republican primary debate, which is scheduled to take place on September 27 at 9 p.m. ..... This time around, the Republican presidential hopefuls will have the opportunity to go head-to-head and try to steal the spotlight.

 ..... However, this time, with candidates like Ron DeSantis in the mix, the other contenders are determined to make their mark.

 ..... Hosting the debate in Simi Valley, situated in this Democratic stronghold, adds an interesting dynamic to the event. ..... 

Instead of attending the debate, Donald Trump is reported to be giving a speech in front of union workers in Detroit. This move aligns with his previous statement that he would not be attending the primary debates, as he believes the public already knows him and his successful presidency. During the last debate, Trump released a pre-recorded interview with Tucker Carlson, further showcasing his alternative approach to the traditional debate format.


The list of participants for the second debate has not yet been released by the RNC. However, it is likely that Donald Trump, Vivek Ramaswamy, Ron DeSantis, and Tim Scott will have qualified. ..... 

With Stuart Varney, Dana Perino, and Ilia Calder??n moderating the debate, it remains uncertain whether Trump will attend. His absence from the first debate and his remarks about being harassed by candidates who shouldn't be running and a network that isn't friendly suggest that he may skip the second debate as well. ..... 

Candidates announced for second Republican debate, RNC releases details for third debate

The Republican National Committee (RNC) has officially confirmed that the third GOP presidential debate will be held in Miami, Florida, in early November. This announcement follows previous speculation that the debate would take place at the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa. According to CNN, NBC News and Salem Media are currently in talks to host the debate, with discussions ongoing. The first Republican debate took place in Milwaukee, Wisconsin on August 23, hosted by Fox News, and featured eight candidates. Notably, former President Donald Trump, who is currently the front-runner in the race, did not attend.

The second Republican debate is scheduled to be hosted by Fox Business and Univision at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, California on September 27, from 9 to 11 p.m. ET. The requirements for participation in this debate are more stringent compared to the previous one. ..... Additionally, candidates must reach 3% support in two national polls or 3% in one national poll and 3% in two polls conducted in different early nominating states such as Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada, or South Carolina. Candidates are also required to sign a pledge in which they agree to support the eventual Republican presidential nominee, abstain from participating in any non-RNC-sanctioned debates for the rest of the election cycle, and consent to data-sharing with the national party committee. The deadline to meet these qualifications is 48 hours before the debate commences.

Among the candidates who have met all the requirements are North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum and Michigan businessman Perry Johnson. Meanwhile, former Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson and radio host Larry Elder have signed the pledge but have yet to meet the other requirements. The only candidate who has fulfilled the RNC's polling and fundraising requirements but has not signed the pledge is former President Donald Trump. It remains uncertain as to whether Trump, who is leading the GOP race for president, will sign the pledge and attend the second debate in California or any future RNC-sanctioned debates.

 ..... FOX News Media is the hosting network for the first two debates of the 2024 election cycle. The previous debate, "Democracy 24: FOX News Republican Primary Debate," drew an impressive 12.8 million viewers, making it the highest-rated non-sporting event cable telecast of the year so far.

Donald Trump's Republican rivals need to take him on at second debate, moderator says

Donald Trump's rivals need to take him on more forcefully at next week's Republican presidential debate if they have any hope of cutting into the runaway front-runner's massive lead in opinion polls, one of the debate moderators said on Tuesday.

"They're not going to be able to put a dent in his lead if they don't. President Trump has a commanding and seemingly very enduring lead. It's up to these candidates to show why they think that they would be better," said Dana Perino, a White House press secretary under Republican President George W. Bush and now an anchor and political commentator at Fox News.

Trump, who leads his nearest rival for the Republican presidential nomination by some 40 percentage points in opinion polls, is skipping the second debate, just as he did the first one in Wisconsin last month.

Perino, a co-moderator of the Sept. 27 debate, said none of Trump's rivals managed to alter the dynamic of the nominating race in that first debate. She said that needed to change in the next rhetorical clash, which will take place at 9 p.m. ..... 

"If you're a supporter or a donor of one of these candidates, you want to see a breakout moment," she said.

With voting in the nominating contest starting in Iowa in January, Trump's Republican rivals are running out of time to halt his march to becoming the Republican standard-bearer, despite his myriad legal troubles. Trump has been indicted four times this year.

Stuart Varney, a Fox Business Network anchor and one of Perino's co-moderators, said the candidates will be questioned on a range of issues, including immigration, inflation, crime, and foreign policy.

Six candidates have so far qualified for the debate: Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, former Vice President Mike Pence, former U.S. ambassador to the U. ..... 

Most of them are languishing in single digits in opinion polls, way behind Trump, whose lead has only increased in recent months with each of four criminal indictments.


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