Democratic presidential candidate Tulsi Gabbard recently attacked the purported “lack of transparency” of the debate requirements laid out by the Democratic National Committee (DNC). Although Gabbard met the donor threshold for the September debate, she did not reach the polling threshold of 2 percent or more in four approved polls.
Gabbard did, however, hit 2 percent or more in four polls — they just weren’t approved by the DNC, which is why she is criticized their approach to debate qualifications.
“Lack of transparency in the DNC’s debate requirements means lack of trust in the process, and a sense of trying to take power away from voters,” she tweeted. “It’s more important than ever that we carry our message forward until we finally have a govt of, by, and for the people.”
According to LA Progressive, Gabbard’s relationship with the DNC has been rocky since she left the formal governing body after what she believed was unfair treatment of Bernie Sanders in the 2016 presidential primaries.
“The DNC’s methodology for revenging itself on her has been one that lacks integrity and seems to fall within the ‘scam’ methods the DNC used against Bernie in 2016,” the report reads.
As of now, Gabbard can still make the October debates but needs to hit 2 percent in four approved polls. In addition, Politico reports that the DNC is set to up the debate requirements for the next round of debates in November, which — as of now — may take Gabbard of the running for debate appearances. However, it’s unclear what the new thresholds will be for the November debates, and the candidates are currently in the dark — a likely source of stress for those like Gabbard, and even candidates that barely qualified for the September debates.
Thank you #Dubuque!! Great town hall this morning where we talked about many important issues including immigration reform, the need to pass sensible gun safety laws, protect our environment, end the failed war on drugs, end wasteful wars and invest in serving our people! pic.twitter.com/cOb4OwH6En— Tulsi Gabbard (@TulsiGabbard) September 3, 2019
Fellow Democratic presidential candidate Andrew Yang had a similar clash with the DNC over polling requirements for the debates back in July. After taking to Twitter to announce that he secured 2 percent in four approved polls, the DNC said that two of the polls Yang counted — the July 11 NBC/Wall Street Journal poll and the July 19 poll by NBC and SurveyMonkey — are counted as one because of the overlapped sponsor: NBC.
Yang’s campaign manager, Zach Graumann, disagreed, suggesting that all four of the polls Yang cited were backed by “approved organizations” and thus qualified Yang for the fall debates by the DNC’s own rules. In the end, Yang was luckier than Gabbard and ended up qualifying for the fall debates in September and October by hitting 2 percent in a subsequent poll.