Fox Cancels Monday's Debate
After Trump, Kasich drop out
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 16, 2016 12:36 PM CDT
In this Feb. 25, 2016 file photo, Republican presidential candidates, from left, Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., Donald Trump, Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, and Ohio Gov. John Kasich debate take part in the Republican...   (AP Photo/David J. Phillip, File)

(Newser) – Fox News, apparently uninterested in hosting a forum in which Ted Cruz debates, alone, on live national TV, has canceled Monday's GOP presidential debate. Donald Trump was the first to drop out of the Utah debate, claiming on Wednesday that there have been "enough" debates already, and John Kasich dropped out soon after. "We had hoped to contrast Governor Kasich’s positive inclusive approach to problem solving with Trump’s campaign of division. If he changes his mind, we will be there," Kasich's chief strategist told Fox 13 in a statement. Now, Fox 13 confirms, the debate has been canceled entirely, after Fox officials and the Republican National Committee powwowed. Per Utah Republican Party officials, Kasich's decision to withdraw pushed them over the edge.

"On Feb. 20, the Republican National Committee announced that a GOP presidential primary debate would be held on March 21 in Salt Lake City," says Michael Clemente, executive VP of news at the Fox News Channel, in a statement. "They offered that debate to Fox News Channel to host, provided there were enough candidates actively campaigning. This morning, Donald Trump announced he would not be participating in the debate. Shortly afterward, John Kasich's campaign announced that without Trump at the debate, Kasich would not participate. Ted Cruz has expressed a willingness to debate Trump or Kasich—or both. But obviously, there needs to be more than one participant. So the Salt Lake City debate is cancelled."