Fox News announced on Tuesday the 10 GOP candidates who will appear in its first presidential debate of the 2016 campaign.
Based on an average of the five most recent national polls, the candidates who made the cut for the Thursday debate are Donald Trump (23.4 percent), former Florida Governor Jeb Bush (12.0 percent), Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker (10.2 percent), former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee (6.6 percent), Dr. Ben Carson (5.8 percent), Texas Senator Ted Cruz (5.4 percent), Florida Senator Marco Rubio (5.4 percent), Kentucky Senator Rand Paul (4.8 percent), New Jersey Governor Chris Christie (3.4 percent) and Ohio Governor John Kasich (3.2 percent).
Former Texas Governor Rick Perry (1.8 percent), former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum (1.4 percent), Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal (1.4 percent), former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina (1.3 percent), South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham (0.7 percent), former New York Governor George Pataki (0.6 percent) and former Virginia Governor Jim Gilmore (0.2 percent) all fell short of the required level of support in national polls.
The debate kicks off at 9 p.m. ET on Thursday, moderated by Fox News’ Megyn Kelly, Bret Baier and Chris Wallace.
At 5 p.m., the remaining candidates will participate in a candidate forum.
With 17 candidates announcing that they’re seeking the nomination, debate sponsors needed to find some way to cut down on the crowded GOP field.
Fox announced this past spring that only 10 candidates would get to debate based on the highest average standings in five of the most recent national polls leading up to the event.
The debate, which will take place at Cleveland’s Quicken Loans Arena, will be two hours long. Donald Trump’s position is likely to be in the center of the stage.