WATCH: The Real History Behind the Debate Commission's 15% Rule

Author: Jake Simms
Created: 19 September, 2016
Updated: 17 October, 2022
1 min read


We over at Third Candidates took a look at the controversial debate access criteria that has been criticized for keeping third party and independent candidates out the important presidential debates.

We spoke with political experts, the authors of this criteria - the Commission on Presidential Debates, and critics who claim that the criteria is intentionally unfair to keep out competitive, non-major party candidates. While Libertarian Party candidate Gary Johnson and Green Party candidate Jill Stein polling at historic numbers for third party candidates, they are still being denied entry into the first debate. Needless to say, this rule is as relevant as ever. 

Our next episode of Third Candidates will take a look at the hurdles non-major party candidates face when trying to get on state ballots, and a possible reform that's on the ballot in Maine this November that could eliminate the 'spoiler' effect -- Ranked Choice Voting.

Editor's note: To learn more about the Third Candidates project or how you can help keep it going, follow the team at Seed & Spark and Facebook to get updates.


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