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On Debate Deadline Day, New Polls Have Bad News for Some

Looks like the next Democratic presidential debate will have just 10 candidates
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 28, 2019 2:03 PM CDT
Michael Bennet, Kirsten Gillibrand, Julian Castro, Cory Booker, Joe Biden, Kamala Harris, Andrew Yang, Tulsi Gabbard, Jay Inslee, and Bill de Blasio participate in the second of two Democratic presidential...   (AP Photo/Paul Sancya)

(Newser) – Midnight Wednesday is the deadline to qualify for the next Democratic presidential debate, and with hours to go, two newly released polls failed to bring good news to any of the candidates who have been struggling to qualify, NBC News reports. Most notably, billionaire financier Tom Steyer—who came the closest to qualifying out of any of the candidates not already qualified, per CNN—had less than 1% support in both polls; in order to qualify, one more poll needed to put him at 2% or higher. No other pollster has announced plans to release another poll Wednesday. Steyer, who entered the race last month, has spent almost $12 million on TV and digital ads and had been criticized for trying to "buy his way in" to the ABC-sponsored debate, which will be held next month in Houston. They were originally scheduled for Sept. 12 and 13 but will be held just on the 12th if no one else qualifies today.

In addition to four polls showing 2% or higher support, candidates need to have 130,000 unique donors by the end of the day in order to qualify. As Newsweek reports, the other 2020 candidates who have not yet qualified are: Tulsi Gabbard, Kirsten Gillibrand, Michael Bennet, Steve Bullock, Tim Ryan, John Delaney, Bill de Blasio, Marianne Williamson, Joe Sestak, and Wayne Messam. Of those, Newsweek pegs just Gabbard and Williamson, in addition to Steyer, as having met the fundraising requirement, but they would need multiple polls to come out putting them at 2%, as would Gillibrand, who says she's close to the donor requirement. Those who have qualified: Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, Kamala Harris, Pete Buttigieg, Cory Booker, Amy Klobuchar, Beto O'Rourke, Andrew Yang, and Julián Castro. Wednesday's new polls still have Biden strongly at the head of the pack, with Warren in second place followed by Sanders, then Harris and Buttigieg basically tied. (Read more Election 2020 stories.)

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