published : 2023-10-19

Republican Presidential Candidate Contemplates Skipping Third Debate

Vivek Ramaswamy: 'I’m considering my options' as he mulls skipping party's 3rd presidential debate

Republican presidential candidate Vivek Ramaswamy contemplating whether to participate in the third GOP primary debate taken with a Nikon D850

Former President Donald Trump may not be the only 2024 Republican contender to rule out participating in next month's third GOP presidential nomination debate in Florida.

Vivek Ramaswamy would not commit to the Nov. 8 showdown in Miami.

The multimillionaire biotech entrepreneur and first-time presidential candidate told Fox News on Wednesday after filing to place his name on the presidential primary ballot in New Hampshire, 'I’m considering my options.'

Ramaswamy's dilemma arises from the question of why support an 'America First 2.0' candidate when Trump is also on the ballot?

Trump, who remains the commanding polling and fundraising front-runner for the Republican nomination as he makes his third straight White House run, has already skipped the first two debates.

Late last month, Trump's campaign adviser Chris LaCivita announced that Trump would not take the stage at the third debate.

Vivek Ramaswamy filing to place his name on the presidential primary ballot in New Hampshire taken with a Canon EOS R5

Trump's campaign is calling for all future debates to be canceled and urges the Republican National Committee, the organizer of the debates, to 'refocus its manpower and money' on defeating Democrats in next year's election.

The Republican National Committee raised the polling and donor thresholds that 2024 primary candidates must reach to qualify for the third debate.

Candidates need a minimum of 70,000 unique donors to their campaign or exploratory committee, including 200 donors in 20 or more states.

They must also reach 4% support in two national polls, or 4% in one national poll and 4% in two statewide polls conducted in Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada, or South Carolina.

Additionally, candidates are required to sign a pledge agreeing to support the eventual Republican presidential nominee, refrain from participating in any non-RNC sanctioned debates for the rest of the 2024 election cycle, and agree to data-sharing with the national party committee.

Ramaswamy, having satisfied these criteria, remains undecided about participating in the Miami debate.

Former President Donald Trump speaking at a campaign event in Wolfeboro, New Hampshire taken with a Sony A7R IV

He stated that his campaign is weighing what would best advance substantive debate for the future of the Republican Party and the country.

Ramaswamy was onstage at the second debate along with Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley, Sen. Tim Scott of South Carolina, former Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey, former Vice President Mike Pence, and North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum.

Former Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson, who qualified for the first debate, failed to make the stage at the second debate.

The Republican National Committee has selected partners for the debate, including NBC News, Salem Radio Network, the Republican Jewish Coalition, and Rumble.

The third debate will take place almost two months before the Iowa caucuses, which is the leadoff contest in the 2024 GOP presidential nominating calendar.