[I hope jconway doesn’t mind me designating this the “official” debate thread. — Charley]
12 candidates on one stage is not my idea of a substantive discussion. I think the DNC has thus far done a decent job with including the lesser known candidates and making sure the top tier candidates get an opportunity to debate each other. I am glad they used random assortments for the previous big debates instead of making an under card or main night dichotomy. By this point, all of the candidates have had good exposure to the voters. Even the Delaneys and Bullocks of the field. Which is why its time for the lesser knowns to go.
There has been a clear and consistent top tier in terms of fundraising and polling that has begun to emerge. By raising the threshold of the next debate to just 4%, the DNC would likely cut out many of the middle and all of the bottom tier candidates. There is still a chance someone from the middle tier (Yang, Klobuchar, Booker, O’Rourke, or Castro are all polling at around 2%) could qualify with that metric.
Otherwise we will finally get a five person debate between Sanders, Warren, Biden, Buttigieg,and Harris. These are the candidates that are likeliest to place in the top 3 in Iowa and New Hampshire. The likeliest to move on past the early primary states. They have the ground game, the fundraising, and the polling to go the distance. We deserve that debate.