Republican Debate Line-Up: CNN Increases Number of Participants by 300 lbs.

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The fifth Republican debate of the election season is coming up Tuesday, December 15th. As the final debate in this series, it’s your last chance to see all the players on stage together. This event is critical to the candidates as it will help shape the contest heading into the very important Iowa caucuses.

The debate will be hosted by CNN. One shakeup from the previous debate is that New Jersey Governor Chris Christie will be back on the main debate stage.

Republican Debate Line-Up

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie

He had polled too low to make it to the main stage in the last debate, but thanks mostly to a surge of support in New Hampshire, his numbers have come up enough to get him back in the big show.

The full list of candidates who made it into the main debate is: former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, Texas Senator Ted Cruz, former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina, Ohio Governor John Kasich, Kentucky Senator Rand Paul, Florida Senator Marco Rubio, and real estate mogul Donald Trump.

Rand Paul was fairly sure he wasn’t going to make it to the main debate, but poll results from Sunday show he has 5% support. That let him just squeak by, equal with Jeb Bush.

Republican Debate Line-Up

Kentucky Senator Rand Paul

The podium order from left to right will be: Kasich, Fiorina, Rubio, Carson, Trump, Cruz, Bush, Christie, Paul.

Candidate hopefuls that didn’t make it to the main debate, but who made it into the “undercard” debate (the Thanksgiving Day meal “kid’s table” of the debates) include: South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham, former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee, former New York Governor George Pataki and former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum.

“Kid’s Table” debate podium order, left to right, will be: Pataki, Huckabee, Santorum, Graham.

Debates can be important and substantive, if the moderators don’t devolve it into a meaningless circus act. Hopefully the media will be responsible (I know, that’s really pushing things, but one must hope) and this will be a good last look at all the main GOP contestants together.

Republican Debate Line-Up

About Author

Steve Ralston is a country-living programmer and web developer. Married over 30 years, with two grown kids (one on each coast), he’s learned a lot of lessons along life’s path. With a family military history reaching from his great-grandfather through to his son and daughter, the cost of freedom and the true value of this country is as real to Steve as the ground you stand on.

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