Johnson, Stein Won’t Be in First Debate

With the first presidential debate a little over a week away, Friday afternoon brought some bad news for the candidacies of Gary Johnson and Jill Stein.

Johnson, the Libertarian candidate, and Stein, of The Green Party, both failed to make the cut for the first debate on Sept. 26, the Commission on Presidential Debates announced Friday afternoon, as Politico reported.

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“Though Johnson and Stein satisfied two of the criteria necessary to participate — that they be constitutionally eligible and have achieved ballot access in a sufficient number of states to win a theoretical Electoral College majority — neither met the threshold on polling,” said an article in Politico.

The commission also said Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton have been formally invited to participate in the first presidential debate later this month, while running mates Mike Pence and Tim Kaine have been invited to participate in the vice presidential debate on Oct. 4.

“[T]he Board determined that the polling averages called for in the third criterion are as follows: Hillary Clinton (43%), Donald Trump (40.4%), Gary Johnson (8.4%) and Jill Stein (3.2%),” the commission said in a statement. “Accordingly, Hillary Clinton and her running mate, Tim Kaine, and Donald Trump and his running mate, Mike Pence, qualify to participate in the September 26 presidential debate and the October 4 vice-presidential debate, respectively. No other candidates satisfied the criteria for inclusion in the September 26 and October 4 debates. The criteria will be reapplied to all candidates in advance of the second and third presidential debates.”

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LifeZette's editor-in-chief Maureen Mackey can be reached at [email protected].