When Is First Democratic Presidential Debate? Debate Schedule Announced Amidst GOP Debate Chatter

The first Democratic presidential debate is two months away, the first of six debates scheduled through March, 2016. The Democratic National Committee announced on Thursday that the first primary debate is scheduled for October 13. The venue has yet to be disclosed, but the debate will be held in Nevada and will air on CNN.

CNN reports that candidates are complaining that there aren’t enough debates planned. Republicans have twice as many debates scheduled, with the first big primary debate held in Cleveland, Ohio on August 6, followed by at least 11 more debates between September and March.

However, DNC Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz feels the schedule should give voters enough time to evaluate the candidates.

“These six debates will not only give caucus goers and primary voters ample opportunity to hear from our candidates about their vision for our country’s future, they will highlight the clear contrast between the values of the Democratic Party which is focused on strengthening the middle class versus Republicans who want to pursue out of touch and out of date policies.”

The DNC’s announcement also included the dates of the other five debates that are scheduled from November through March. Venues for several debates are to be announced at a later date.

  • November 14 — Iowa (CBS)
  • December 19 — Manchester, New Hampshire (ABC)
  • January 17 — Congressional Black Caucus Institute in Charleston, South Carolina (NBC)
  • February or March (TBA) — Miami, Florida – Hosted by Univision and the Washington Post
  • February or March (TBA) — Wisconsin – Hosted by PBS

The candidates who are currently listed in at least five independent nationwide polls include Hillary Clinton, Martin O’Malley, Lincoln Chafee, Bernie Sanders, and Jim Webb.

According to Public Policy Polling, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton leads with 50 percent in the national polls as of August 4, followed by Bernie Sanders with 32 percent. Clinton continues to dominate the polls with women and senior citizens, but Sanders has a good hold on young voters and men.

Trailing so far behind that they are — at least for now — rather insignificant in the polls are Martin O’Malley (4 percent), Lincoln Chafee (3 percent), and Jim Webb (2 percent). Other candidates include Jeff Boss, Robby Wells, and Willie Wilson.

In addition to the Democratic presidential debate schedule, other key dates include primaries and caucuses (February — June, 2016) that will lead up to the 2016 Democratic National Convention (July 25—28).

Follow the Democratic National Committee on Twitter @TheDemocrats for the latest updates on the upcoming presidential debates.

[Image: Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images News]