5 candidates qualified for the debate. Trump did not.
Chris Christie, Nikki Haley Vivek Ramaswamy, Tim Scott and Ron DeSantis. (Steve Marcus/Reuters (2), Joe Raedle/Getty Images, Ethan Miller/Getty Images, Charlie Neibergal/AP)
NBC News, which is hosting tonight’s debate, explains why:
“Five candidates will be on the stage Wednesday night at the third GOP presidential debate in Miami, but North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum fell short after having made the first two Republican debates this year.
Former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, former United Nations Ambassador Nikki Haley, businessman Vivek Ramaswamy and Sen. Tim Scott of South Carolina all qualified for the Wednesday debate, the Republican National Committee said in a statement. Former President Donald Trump, meanwhile, is skipping another debate.
The five qualified candidates all met the RNC’s criteria, including having accrued at least 70,000 unique donors and meeting a minimum polling requirement (at least 4% in two national polls or one national and one early-state poll that meet RNC requirements). The candidates also had to sign pledges, including one to support the Republican Party’s eventual nominee.
Trump, who also skipped the first two debates, easily surpassed the donor and polling requirements, according to NBC News’ analysis. But he has so far refused to sign the party pledges, which he must do to qualify. He has held campaign or media events on his own during the previous two debates and has a campaign rally scheduled for Wednesday, as well.”