When is the fourth Republican candidate debate? Start time, candidates and how to watch

Nikki Haley and Ron DeSantis sduring the third Republican presidential primary debate
Nikki Haley and Ron DeSantis sduring the third Republican presidential primary debate - MANDEL NGAN

Republican presidential hopefuls are rallying their campaigns ahead of the fourth debate after the requirements for participation were tightened.

On Nov 3, the Republican National Committee (RNC) announced that candidates would need to meet more stringent polling requirements to appear at the event in Alabama.

It comes after Mike Pence became the first major candidate to drop out of the race, leaving Nikki Haley and Ron DeSantis as the two main challengers to Donald Trump.

At the third debate in October, Nikki Haley ruffled feathers by calling Vivek Ramaswamy “scum” over his comment on her daughter’s use of TikTok.

Mr Trump has refused to back down over his refusal to attend the events, having hosted rival speeches and interviews at the same time as the last two debates in a bid to sway audience attention.

When is the fourth Republican debate?

The next debate will take place on Dec 6 in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.

Alabama has remained a Republican stronghold since 1980 and is expected to remain the same in next year’s election.

Where to watch the debate

NewsNation, The Megyn Kelly Show on SiriusXM and the Washington Free Beacon will host the event.

It will also be livestreamed on Rumble, a video-sharing platform popular with some conservatives.

Fox News debate moderator Megyn Kelly
Fox News debate moderator Megyn Kelly - JIM LO SCALZO

Who is attending?

The RNC has tightened its qualifying requirements for the debate even further this time around, in a move which could oust two candidates from the stage.

Candidates are now required to receive six per cent support in at least two national polls, or both six per cent in one national poll and six per cent in one statewide poll in Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina or Nevada.

They will also need at least 80,000 unique donors, and 200 donors from each of 20 or more states and territories, the RNC stipulated.

For the third debate, candidates were only required to register at least four per cent in two national polls or in one national poll and one early-state poll, and they only needed 70,000 unique donors, 200 of which must come from 20 or more states each.

While there are seven candidates still in the race, it is likely that under the new regulations only four of the candidates have a chance of qualifying for the event.

Ms Haley and Mr DeSantis are both expected to appear, while Mr Ramaswamy appears to be on the verge of making the cut.

Although he easily meets the qualifications, Donald Trump maintains that he will not be attending any of the debates.

Chris Christie, the governor of New Jersey and Doug Burgum, the governor of North Dakota, appears to be at risk of failing to meet the requirements.

What is Trump doing instead?

Mr Trump has so far refused to attend any of the Republican debates and has instead hosted rival events including interviews and campaign rallies.

“The public knows who I am & what a successful Presidency I had,” the former president wrote on Truth Social in August. “I will therefore not be doing the debates.”

For the third debate, Mr Trump held a rally in Hialeah, South Florida while during the second, he skipped the event deliver a speech in front of union workers in Detroit.

When the first took place he released a pre-recorded interview with conservative commentator and former Fox anchor Tucker Carlson.

What issues will the candidates be quizzed on?

Its not clear exactly what questions will be asked, but during the last debate foreign policy remained front and centre of the conversation as candidates discussed the implications of Israel’s war against Hamas.

The Megyn Kelly Show host Megyn Kelly, newsanchor Elizabeth Vargas, and Washington Free Beacon editor in chief Eliana Johnson are slated to moderate the event.

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