Seven Democrats qualify for December debate, down from 10 in November

Ballotpedia's Daily Presidential News Briefing
December 13, 2019: Seven Democratic candidates qualified for the sixth presidential primary debate on Dec. 19. Neither Julián Castro nor John Delaney filed petition signatures to appear on Virginia’s primary ballot.        

            Each Friday, we highlight a presidential candidate’s key campaign staffer.
Daily Presidential News Briefing, Staffer Spotlight - Kayleigh McEnany

Kayleigh McEnany is a Republican staffer with media and presidential and gubernatorial campaign experience. McEnany graduated from Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service and Harvard Law School.

Previous campaign work:

  • 2006 Tom Gallagher (R-Fla.) gubernatorial campaign, intern
  • 2004 George W. Bush presidential campaign, intern

Other experience:

  • 2017-2019: Republican National Committee, spokesperson
  • 2016-2017: CNN, contributor
  • 2011-2016: Various news networks, political commentator
  • 2010-12: Mike Huckabee Show, producer

Notable Quote of the Day

“There’s always a risk in any campaign, when two candidates go after each other and go after each other hard, it lets a third or fourth candidate rise because voters get sick of the attacks. In 2004, it was a big back and forth between Dean and Gephardt, and Kerry rose from behind and just ran up the middle and surprised everyone.”

– Steve Elmendorf, Democratic adviser


  • Seven Democratic candidates qualified for the sixth presidential primary debate on Dec. 19: Joe BidenPete ButtigiegAmy KlobucharBernie SandersTom SteyerElizabeth Warren, and Andrew Yang.
  • The Democratic National Committee announced the dates and locations of the next four debates: Jan. 14 (Des Moines, Iowa), Feb. 7 (Manchester, New Hampshire), Feb. 19 (Las Vegas, Nevada), and Feb. 25 (Charleston, South Carolina).
  • Michael BennetBidenCory BookerButtigiegKlobucharSandersSteyer, and Warren are attending a town hall on education in Pittsburgh on Saturday.
  • Since launching his campaign in late November, Michael Bloomberg has hired 200 employees at his campaign headquarters in Manhattan and nearly 100 staffers across 15 states.
  • Booker is attending a campaign event in New Hampshire on Friday. Booker said he was remaining in the race despite not qualifying for the debate: ”Thanks to the outpouring of support over the past few weeks, we know there’s a path to victory, and we no longer need the debate stage to get there.”
  • Neither Julián Castro nor John Delaney filed petition signatures to appear on Virginia’s primary ballot by the deadline on Thursday.
  • Delaney will attend campaign events in Clinton and Muscatine counties in Iowa on Saturday.
  • Tulsi Gabbard will campaign in South Carolina on Friday,
  • Klobuchar will hold three campaign events in Iowa on Sunday.
  • Deval Patrick’s episode of the “Candidate Café” series in New Hampshire was released on Thursday.
  • Sanders will hold three rallies in Iowa over the weekend and meet with minor league baseball players and employees on Sunday.
  • Steyer is campaigning in Iowa on Sunday and Monday, including giving a speech on economic policy in Dubuque.
  • Warren will hold town halls in southeast Iowa over the weekend.
  • Marianne Williamson will campaign in Smithtown, New York, on Sunday.
  • Yang is concluding his four-day bus tour of Iowa on Saturday with a rally in Iowa City.


  • The Hawaii Republican Party canceled its presidential primary and committed its 19 convention delegates to Donald Trump.
  • The Trump campaign announced it will launch three coalitions to appeal to Evangelical, Catholic, and Jewish voters in early 2020.
  • Bill Weld said he will not run as an independent candidate if he loses the Republican primary. Weld said he would instead support the Democratic or Libertarian candidate.

What We’re Reading

Flashback: December 13, 2015

CNN announced the lineup for the final Republican debate of the year. Jeb Bush, Ben Carson, Ted Cruz, Chris Christie, Carly Fiorina, John Kasich, Rand Paul, Marco Rubio, and Donald Trump qualified for the primetime debate. Lindsey Graham, Mike Huckabee, George Pataki, and Rick Santorum were scheduled to participate in the undercard debate.

Click here to learn more.