GOP nominee Donald Trump is reeling from the release of a tape showing him making lewd comments about women. Now with the second 2016 presidential debate on the way, could Libertarian bet Gary Johnson take advantage of the tapes to secure a place on the stage?
Currently, only the candidates of the two major parties can participate in the debates. However third party candidates can be included provided they meet one critical condition: they must poll at 15 percent.
Debates.org revealed the five polls used to determine debate eligibility. These are:
- ABC-Washington Post
- CBS-New York Times
- CNN-Opinion Research Corporation
- Fox News
- NBC-Wall Street Journal
If a third-party candidate shows support of at least 15 percent in an average of these five polls, that candidate will be able to participate in the 2016 presidential debate. So far, Romper has reported that Gary Johnson is polling an average of seven percent, way below the minimum requirement.
A businessman, Johnson was previously a registered Republican but in 2011, he withdrew his candidacy for the GOP and stood for the Libertarian nomination instead. He went on to announce his candidacy for the Libertarian nomination in the presidential race and win the party’s nomination last May.
Johnson has been the go-to candidate for voters disgruntled with Donald Trump but are unwilling to vote for Hillary Clinton. He has championed the Libertarian views of civil liberties, non-interventionism, laissez-faire capitalism and the abolition of the welfare state.
With Trump’s scandals expected to alienate some voters, the Libertarian bet believes he can harness them to raise his poll numbers. Should he reach the minimum requirement, the debate stage will have one more podium by October 9.
He is running out of time though as the second 2016 presidential debate is less than two days away. Can Gary Johnson acquire the necessary numbers or will he sit this one out once again? Let us know what you think in the comments.