DNC raises polling and fundraising thresholds for January debate

Ballotpedia's Daily Presidential News Briefing
December 23, 2019: The Democratic National Committee released the criteria to qualify for the January presidential primary debate, raising both the polling and fundraising thresholds. The Democratic presidential candidates head to Iowa and New Hampshire over the holidays.

Here’s the latest from the campaign trail. Happy holidays! We’ll return with the Daily Presidential News Briefing on Monday, December 30. If you also subscribe to the Weekly Briefing, this email will replace your Friday delivery for these next two holiday weeks.

Notable Quote of the Day

“Overall, Latinos are far more likely to be Democrats than Republicans, but Hispanic men are more likely than Hispanic women to vote Republican. …

The emerging divide highlights the complexity of what is now the nation’s largest minority group before a presidential election where immigration and identity will be core issues.

President Donald Trump is hoping that his inroads among Hispanics will help him win the pivotal swing state of Florida, and possibly provide enough support to threaten Democrats in states like New Mexico and Nevada. Still, the gender gap has traditionally helped Democrats because women are more likely to vote than men, so that party benefits more from its disproportionate support among women.”

– Nicholas Riccardi, Associated Press


  • The Democratic National Committee released the criteria to qualify for the January presidential primary debate, raising both the polling and fundraising thresholds. Each candidate has to receive 5% support or more in at least four national or early state polls or 7% support or more in at least two early state polls to meet the debate’s polling threshold. Candidates also have to meet a fundraising threshold of 225,000 unique donors and a minimum of 1,000 donors in at least 20 states. Candidates have until Jan. 10 to qualify. Five have already qualified: Joe BidenPete ButtigiegAmy KlobucharBernie Sanders, and Elizabeth Warren.

  • Michael Bennet campaigned in Iowa on Sunday and Monday, holding meet-and-greet events in Indianola, Boone, and Johnston.

  • Biden will campaign in Iowa on Dec. 27-28 with events in Iowa County, Tipton, Washington, and Fairfield.

  • Michael Bloomberg campaigned in Detroit on Saturday, where he opened an office. He also opened offices in Philadelphia and Milwaukee.

  • Cory Booker will finish his five-day tour of Iowa on Monday with stops in Henry, Warren, and Polk counties.

  • Buttigieg will campaign in Iowa from Dec. 28-30 with stops in Marshalltown, West Des Moines, Knoxville, and other cities. He released his immigration platform on Sunday, which would reverse Trump administration policies, create a pathway to citizenship for 11 million immigrants living in the U.S. without legal permission, and establish a National Office of New Americans.

  • Julián Castro made five campaign stops in Seattle on Friday, including speaking with immigration advocates at the headquarters of OneAmerica.

  • Tulsi Gabbard is campaigning in New Hampshire from Dec. 26 to Jan. 1, holding town halls in Hollis, Hudson, Salem, Portsmouth, and Barrington.

  • Klobuchar is finishing her four-day tour of Iowa on Monday with stops in Sheldon, Ashton, and Lyon. She will also campaign in South Dakota. Her campaign said she raised more than $1 million in the 24 hours following the sixth Democratic debate.

  • Deval Patrick will continue to campaign in New Hampshire on Monday, speaking in Manchester and Exeter.

  • Sanders will campaign in New Hampshire from Dec. 27-29, holding town halls on healthcare, democracy, and environmental issues.

  • Tom Steyer will campaign in Colorado from Dec. 28-29, including a town hall with state Secretary of State Jena Griswold.

  • Warren will campaign in Iowa Dec. 28-29, holding town halls in Des Moines, Clarinda, and Council Bluffs.

  • On Friday, Marianne Williamson began airing a new ad in Iowa markets and on social media that will run until the end of the caucuses. Williamson will campaign in Los Angeles on Monday and return to Iowa from Dec. 27-29.

  • Andrew Yang made appearances on CNN and PBS NewsHour over the weekend.


  • Donald Trump spoke at the Turning Point USA Student Action Summit in West Palm Beach, Florida, on Saturday. He will remain in the state for the holidays.

  • The North Carolina Board of Elections added Joe Walsh and Bill Weld to the Republican primary ballot after they submitted petitions. The state Republican Party had only submitted Trump’s name for the ballot in October.

Flashback: December 23, 2015

Mike Huckabee said that he would consider dropping out of the presidential race if he did not place first, second or third in Iowa. “If we can’t come within striking distance of the victory or win it, then I think we recognize that it’s going to be hard to take that onto the other states,” he said.blank

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