CNN will broadcast the next Republican primary debate on Jan. 10th. This is the last opportunity for candidates to present their cases to voters before the Iowa caucuses, so this is a very important event.
Vivek Ramaswamy (Indiana) and Chris Christie (New Jersey) are unlikely to qualify. Nikki Haley and Ron DeSantis will likely be the only two left to debate. Axios reports that the debate may not take place as Haley has not committed to participate.
Alex Thompson of Axios writes, “This is the first debate not sponsored by the Republican National Committee. Last week they decided to suspend all debates to allow candidates to participate in non-sanctioned forums.”
Why is Haley not willing to commit? She says it’s due to Donald Trump refusing to debate.
Olivia Perez Cubas, her spokesperson told Axios that “many new offers” have been made since the RNC backed out of the debates. We look forward to the debate in Iowa, and to continuing to show voters that Nikki is the best candidate to replace Joe Biden and to save our country. This debate should also include Donald Trump.”
Haley has been trying to convince Trump to debate, something that he had committed to avoid.
She told KTIV that last week, “I think President Trump will have to debate here in Iowa as he is fighting for the votes of Iowans.” “I think that he has to sit down and do the work.”
She added, “You cannot have an election without appearing on a stage to debate in front of people who will be voting for you.”
Haley, has it not occurred to you that Trump did not participate in any GOP debates? Why does she keep tilting her head at the windmill? Haley could have other reasons for not wanting to participate in this debate. She avoids tough questions or challenges to her record.
Haley appeared at 32 Iowa events as of this writing. Her last press conference was held at the Iowa State Fair, in August. Haley answered her first question in that press gaggle by saying the media was “Trump obsessed,” which is quite a bold statement from someone who uses him to avoid debates. She has also avoided the media following debates and speeches.
The only questions that she will face at the debate on Jan. 10 are from the moderators. This raises the question of whether she is afraid to take DeSantis one-on-one. DeSantis’ camp appears to believe that this is the case.
Bryan Griffin, a spokesperson for DeSantis, told Axios that it’s no surprise Haley didn’t confirm her participation in the debates next month in Iowa and New Hampshire. Other people are also wondering about the same thing.
If you want to be the GOP nominee you’ve got to prove your ability to step onto the debate stage and deliver. Over the last two weeks, @RonDeSantis has soundly defeated liberals Gavin Newsom and Nikki Haley. Is that why Haley won’t commit to debating him again in IA and NH? https://t.co/PTGG4gWXwr
— David Polyansky (@DavidPolyansky) December 12, 2023
Haley has a right to ask these questions. However, given that she is known for avoiding difficult questions, it’s unlikely we should expect her to answer them. Haley’s refusal to debate DeSantis is a shame. It could be the most informative and best debate ever.