Neither Major Party Has Committed To Attending 2024 Election Debates

Neither the Republican National Committee (RNC) nor the Democratic National Committee (DNC) has confirmed their attendance in the newly announced general election debates for the 2024 presidential election. The Commission on Presidential Debates (CPD) revealed on Monday that three general debates would be held between Sept. 16 and Oct. 9.

According to the CPD, which is a nonpartisan nonprofit that has sponsored every general election presidential debate since it was established in 1987, all three debates will be held in college towns.

The first debate is scheduled for Sept. 16 at Texas State University in San Marcos. The second debate will be held on Oct. 1 at Virginia State University in Petersburg. Less than a month before Nov. 5’s Election Day, the third and final presidential debate will be held on Oct. 9 at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City.

Though the general election debates are now set, neither party has confirmed their attendance. Though the CPD doesn’t receive any funding from the government, or from either political party, the commission has been criticized by both parties recently.

Republicans have recently openly criticized the CPD. The RNC recently began to publicly try to break ties with the committee by forcing their party’s eventual presidential nomination to sign a pledge that says they won’t partake in any CPD general election debate.

The RNC’s relationship with the CPD hit a roadblock during the last presidential election, which saw former President Donald Trump refuse to participate in the second debate. According to Trump, he didn’t agree with the debate being held virtually during the coronavirus pandemic. Since then, the RNC has threatened to pull out of CPD debates completely.

According to RNC Chair Ronna McDaniel, many Republicans are frustrated with how the CPD chooses their moderators. She wrote a letter to CPD last year asking for the debates to be held before early voting started, as well.

The CPD responded by clarifying that they don’t work with party heads. Instead, they deal directly with the presidential candidates.

The DNC also expressed their own frustrations with the CPD. Their complaints come from the 2020 presidential debates, as they felt that the CPD didn’t enforce rules and regulations in regards to Trump. At the time, Trump was going up against current President Joe Biden.

Now that both the DNC and RNC have complaints with the CPD, neither party has yet officially confirmed that they will indeed participate in 2024’s general election debates.

However, Trump has already stated that he would like to debate Biden. Though Trump has avoided every Republican debate so far, he already publicly expressed that he would debate Biden in the general election race.

According to an AP News source, Trump truly wants to debate Biden and is looking forward to it. Even though Trump hasn’t publicly said he would appear in 2024’s debates, this source believes he may go against the RNC’s wishes, especially as he hasn’t seemed worried about crossing the RNC before.