Fox News caps number of debate participants

How many candidates are there for the 2016 GOP nomination? Quite a few. So many, in fact, that Fox News announced a 10-person cap on their debate. To be eligible to participate, candidates will have to polling in the top 10 nationally. Placing in the top 10 will be determined by the last five national polls leading up to the event.

Party and network officials are seeking to balance a desire to include more candidates against concerns about the debates turning into unwieldy sideshows because of the large number of participants. But the network’s decision is certain to elicit protests from lower-polling candidates who would be excluded.

Currently there are 18 potential nominees and more announcements are expected within the coming weeks. If the debate was to take place tomorrow, those excluded would include Gov. Bobby Jindal, Carly Fiorina, Sen. Rick Santorum, and Sen. Lindsey Graham, according to current polling statistics. The Republican National Committee had no objections to the limit.

RNC Chairman Reince Priebus said today, “We support and respect the decision Fox has made which will match the greatest number of candidates we have ever had on a debate stage.”

The debate will take place August 6 at the Quicken Loans Arena, located in Cleveland. Fox News announced three moderators, all from their network: Bret Baier, Megyn Kelly and Chris Wallace. Facebook and the Ohio Republican Party are co-hosting the debate.

[New York Times][National Review] [Image via Fox News]

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