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NBC Announces 5 Moderators for First Debate

Dems' debate will air on NBC stations across the country, 'a rarity'
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 11, 2019 10:20 AM CDT
From left, Lester Holt, Savannah Guthrie, Hoda Kotb, Megyn Kelly, and Chuck Todd attend the 2018 NBCUniversal Upfront event at Rockefeller Plaza on May 14, 2018, in New York.   (Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP)
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(Newser) – The first Democratic presidential debate is a little more than two weeks away, and the moderators have been announced: Rachel Maddow, Savannah Guthrie, Lester Holt, Chuck Todd, and Jose Diaz-Balart of Telemundo. The debate, which will take place in two parts on June 26 and 27 in Miami, will air during prime time on MSNBC, Telemundo, and NBC broadcast stations—the latter of which the New York Times calls "a rarity for a primary debate." Per NBC News, Holt will moderate the first hour each night with Guthrie and Diaz-Balart appearing alongside him, while Todd and Maddow will moderate the second hour, with Holt appearing alongside them. Ten candidates will participate each night, but it isn't yet clear who'll make the cut.

The Democratic National Committee requires candidates to either register 1% support in three qualified polls or have 65,000 unique donors to their campaign, with at least 200 unique ones each in a minimum of 20 states. Candidates have until Wednesday to cross one of the two thresholds, and Fox News reports that some of the lower-tier candidates are less than pleased about the criteria. For example, "the DNC is playing a gate-keeping function and they're creating a filter to determine which candidates can make their arguments to the American people," Rep. John Delaney of Maryland says. The second debate will be broadcast on CNN from Detroit July 30 and 31, and the third will be broadcast by ABC News on Sept. 12 and 13. Criteria for the third, and a fourth to be held in October, will be even more difficult to meet. (Read more Election 2020 stories.)

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