Tom Steyer was one of the Democratic presidential candidates who failed to qualify for the September debate, coming up Thursday. But the billionaire financier will be on stage for the October debate, his campaign announced Sunday. In what Politico calls "a quirk in the debate rules," candidates had more time to qualify for the October debate than they did September, meaning it will likely end up a larger field. Just 10 candidates qualified for September; Steyer is the 11th to qualify for October after he got 2% support in a new poll released Sunday.
In order to qualify, candidates must get at least 2% support in four polls approved by the Democratic National Committee, plus have at least 130,000 unique donors. The candidate next closest to qualifying is Tulsi Gabbard, who needs to hit 2% in two more polls. After her is Marianne Williamson, who needs to get to 2% in three more polls. Last week, Steyer, Gabbard, and John Delaney, who also failed to make the September debate, complained to Fox News that the problem is a lack of DNC-approved polls. The October debate will be held Oct. 15 or 16, or possibly both nights depending on the size of the field, and candidates have until Oct. 1 to qualify. (Read more Election 2020 stories.)