CONCORD, New Hampshire – Former President Donald Trump may not be the only 2024 Republican candidate ruled out participating in the third GOP presidential nomination debate next month in Florida.
Vivek Ramaswamy would not engage in the November 8 showdown in Miami.
“I’m looking at my options,” the multimillionaire biotech entrepreneur and first-time presidential candidate told Fox News on Wednesday after applying to put his name on New Hampshire’s presidential primary ballot.
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Trump, who remains the polling and fundraising favorite for the Republican nomination as he makes his third straight campaign for the White House, underlined his huge lead over his many rivals by skipping the first two debates. Late last month, Trump campaign adviser Chris LaCivita said Trump would not take the stage during the third debate.
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Trump’s campaign is demanding that all future debates be canceled and that the Republican National Committee – which organizes the debates – “refocus its staff and money” on defeating Democrats in next year’s elections.
As first reported by Fox News last month, the RNC raised the polling and donor thresholds that 2024 primary candidates must meet to advance to the third debate.
To participate, each candidate must have a minimum of 70,000 unique donors in their campaign or exploratory committee, including 200 donors in 20 or more states.
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White House candidates must also reach 4% support in two national polls, or reach 4% in one national poll and 4% in two statewide polls conducted in Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada or South Carolina – the four states that lead the Republican Party. calendar of presidential candidacies.
Candidates are also required to sign a pledge agreeing to support the eventual Republican presidential nominee. They must agree not to participate in any debates not sanctioned by the RNC for the remainder of the 2024 election cycle and agree to data sharing with the party’s national committee.
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Ramaswamy reiterated Wednesday that he had met the criteria for the third debate, but that he might join Trump in withdrawing. His campaign has led to internal discussions about whether he should participate in the Miami showdown.
The candidate, who faced numerous criticisms from some of his rivals on stage during the first two debates, declared that “my point of view is what best advances a substantive debate for the future of the Party republican and for the future of our country, and therefore we reflect on what achieves this best.
“I will look at what works best and we will assess whether participation in this third debate is really something that gets things moving,” he stressed.
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Ramaswamy was joined on stage during the second debate by Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, former United Nations Ambassador and former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley, Senator Tim Scott of South Carolina, former Governor Chris Christie of New Jersey, former Vice President Mike Pence and North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum.
Former Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson, who qualified for the first debate, failed to take the stage during the second showdown.
The RNC announced Monday that it has chosen NBC News, Salem Radio Network, the Republican Jewish Coalition (RJC) and Rumble as partners for the debate, which will take place at the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts in Miami-Dade County.
The third debate will take place nearly two months before the Jan. 15 Iowa caucuses, which is the first contest on the 2024 GOP presidential nominating schedule.
Get the latest 2024 election campaign updates, exclusive interviews and more on our Fox News Digital election hub.