The lineup for the Nov. 10 GOP presidential primary debate hosted by Fox Business Network and the Wall Street Journal was announced on Thursday, and former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie were demoted to the "undercard debate."
Huckabee and Christie did not meet the 2.5 percent average polling threshold to qualify for the main debate stage, so they will be joining former Sen. Rick Santorum (R-Pa.) and Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal on the undercard debate. Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), former New York Gov. George Pataki and former Virginia Gov. Jim Gilmore did not poll high enough to even qualify for the debate.
Huckabee made the following tweets:
I'm happy to debate anyone, anywhere, anytime.— Gov. Mike Huckabee (@GovMikeHuckabee) November 6, 2015
Christie appeared on Fox News' "America's Newsroom" and said he wasn't concerned about not making the main stage.
“The bottom line is you need to be on a stage and debating. And so I will be on a stage and debating one way or the other, wherever they put me. You put one in the middle of the square in Manchester, I'll do it there," Christie said. "I'm looking forward to being in the debate in Milwaukee on Tuesday."
Huckabee and Christie did not meet the 2.5 percent average polling threshold to qualify for the main debate stage.
Real estate mogul Donald Trump tweeted in support of Huckabee and Christie.
Thanks @realDonaldTrump. Try to have some fun without me!— Chris Christie (@ChrisChristie) November 6, 2015
Politico believes that the polls that brought down Huckabee were the Investor's Business Daily/TIPP poll and Quinnipiac polls, where Huckabee polled at 1 percent. Christie also polled at 1 percent in the IBD/TIPP poll, but was at 3 percent in the Quinnipiac poll.
The RealClearPolitics polling averages show Huckabee at 2.6 percent and Christie at 2 percent. The next highest candidate is Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) at 2.8 percent, followed by Ohio Gov. John Kasich at 3 percent and former HP CEO Carly Fiorina at 3.8 percent. Barring any dramatic changes in the polls, Paul will likely be the next candidate to be demoted to the undercard debate.