For Republicans who want to make it to the main stage of the next GOP debate, CNN will require candidates to meet one the following:
1) An average of at least 3.5 percent in national polls
2) At least 4 percent in Iowa polls
3) At least 4 percent in New Hampshire polls
With that in mind, 9 candidates would make the cut as of today: Donald Trump, Ben Carson, Sen. Marco Rubio, Sen. Ted Cruz, Gov. Jeb Bush, Gov. John Kasich, Sen. Rand Paul, Carly Fiorina and Gov. Chris Christie.
The debate will be held in Las Vegas on Tuesday, Dec. 15. As with previous outings, CNN will offer a “happy hour” debate for candidates who don’t make the cut for the main stage. For the early debate, candidates must reach at least 1 percent in four separate national, Iowa or New Hampshire polls that are recognized by CNN.
Wolf Blitzer will moderate the debate along with Chief Political Correspondent Dana Bash and conservative radio talk show host Hugh Hewitt.