Hutchinson out of lineup as stage is set for Republican debate

The Republican National Committee (RNC) on Monday night announced the seven GOP candidates who qualified for the second Republican primary debate – and former Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson did not make the list.

Hutchinson, who debated at the first GOP session in August, said he failed to attain the polling threshold established by the RNC to qualify for the Wednesday debate, which mandated that each candidate poll at at least 3% in two national polls or one national and one early state poll.

“Despite falling short of the RNC’s polling requirement for inclusion in the second Presidential Primary Debate, I will continue our campaign to bring out the best of America with events scheduled in Iowa, New Hampshire, and across the country in the next several weeks,” Hutchinson said in a statement.

The former Arkansas governor said he aims to up his polling numbers to 4% in one of the four early states by Thanksgiving, and said he would continue to campaign in Iowa and New Hampshire in the coming weeks.

North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum, former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley, former Vice President Mike Pence, entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy and Sen. Tim Scott (R-S.C.) have all snagged a spot for the Wednesday night debate at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, California, according to the announcement.

Former President Trump, who did not participate in the first GOP debate and continues to lead his closest rival by about 40 points, said he will also not attend the second debate.

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