Republican debate: Who has qualified so far, and how to watch


The Republican National Committee is set to host the first debate of the 2024 presidential nomination cycle on Aug. 23 at the Fiserv Forum Arena in Milwaukee. This is the same venue that will host the Republican National Convention next July 15-18, when the GOP presidential ticket will be confirmed.

Set to run from 5-7 p.m. Alaska Time, the debate will be broadcast by Fox News Channel, simulcast on the Fox Business Network, and streamed online at

As the RNC’s official digital live stream partner, Rumble will feature the debate on the platform’s homepage and make it available for viewers across the country on the RNC’s Rumble channel. Fox News personalities Bret Baier and Martha MacCallum will co-moderate the event.

Tickets will be scarce, and are being managed by the Republican National Committee, in partnership with Fox News, Rumble, Young America’s Foundation, and participating candidates. The audience is anticipated to include members of the RNC, grassroots activists, college students, and elected officials.

To qualify for the debate, each Republican candidate must attract 40,000 individual donors and meet a polling threshold set by the party. This includes either receiving at least 1% of support in three national polls or 1% of support in two national polls and two early-voting state polls.

The RNC also requires candidates to sign a promise to support the eventual Republican nominee. All proof of meeting these criteria must be presented 48 hours prior to the debate. To date, none of the candidates appears to have signed the pledge.

The candidates’ podiums on the stage layout will reflect their polling numbers, placing the highest polling candidate in the center.

Current frontrunner Donald Trump has met the qualifications, but his presence at the debate is unlikely. Several top Republicans have speculated that Trump might keep everyone guessing until the last minute.

On Truth Social, Trump suggested that the debate would give him a look at potential running mates: “Let them debate so I can see who I MIGHT consider for Vice President!”

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley, U.S. Sen. Tim Scott of South Carolina, entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy, former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, and North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum have all met the polling and fundraising thresholds. Former Vice President Mike Pence is still working to meet the donor requirements.

Several other potential candidates, including former Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson, former Texas Rep. Will Hurd, Miami Mayor Francis Suarez, former National Security Adviser John Bolton, and radio host Larry Elder, have not met the basic thresholds yet and do not appear to be gaining traction among Republican voters.

Milwaukee has not had any notable riots since May 2020, when riots broke out relating to the death of repeat criminal George Floyd in Minneapolis while he was being arrested. During that Milwaukee riot, which was one of dozens around the nation, one police officer was shot by a rioter and many businesses were looted by gangs of vandals and thieves.

More information about the debate is at this RNC link.


  1. It wouldn’t be smart for Trump to pass on free publicity. He’s hemorrhaging money fighting 9000 lawsuits and charges.

    Cost for attendance is pocket change.

    I get he’s pissed at Fox, but he can’t ignore them for the next year. Face it head on.

  2. I will stand with Mr. Trump.

    What has been done to Mr. Trump cannot be left unchallenged. That said, my preferred candidates are Vivek & Tulsi.

    In a legitimate nation, when a law is broken the state looks for who done it. Now the state has turned that upside down; they’ve picked the man and have been desperately searching for charges. Given the voluminous and vague nature of federal laws, it’s only a matter of time.

    If we let his go, if we do not shut that witch-hunt down, then our nation has truly fallen. Regardless of what the deranged Left insists, the US is the last bright light of the Renaissance. All the others are falling or have already fell.

    If we lose the United States, we’ve lost everything. Given the behavior and sins of the federal government, there is good reason to let that happen, fair enough. The thing is, the US government is not America. We are. We’ve let the federal beast grow too powerful, too bold, too insane. This next election, I fear, will be our last chance to bring the beast to heel and remind it of who is really its rightful master.

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