Carly Fiorina gets promoted to the top table for the Sep 16 CNN Republican nominee debate pic.twitter.com/vl1RXievEm
— Mike Smithson (@MSmithsonPB) September 2, 2015
CNN changes its rules so she can be at the top table
One of the huge problems for US broadcasters is that so many people have declared themselves as contenders for the Republican party nomination. The current count is about 16 or 17 which clearly is far too big a number for a TV debate to be manageable.
In the first debate, staged by Fox News, there were 2 tiers with those at the top featuring in the main event, and getting the greatest coverage. Amongst the so-called “undercard” debate just one contender stood out – Carly Fiorina the former CEO of Hewlett Packard and the only woman in the race. She got good coverage for her attacks on Donald Trump who, of course, was in the other debate.
The effect was dramatic: polling at 0% or 1% before the event she shot up to seven or eight in some surveys and has even topped the betting favourite, Jeb Bush. Recent polls in Iowa have her holding up a strongish position in what is the first State to decide in the nomination battle.
The next debate from CNN takes place on September 16th and the broadcaster had announced beforehand a strict set of Rules determining who should participate in the top tier based on polling averages before and after the Fox debate. Only problem was that there’ve been so few qualifying polls since the Fox debate that Carly good numbers were not enough when averaged out.
That’s now change and she looks set to be there at the top table in Boston. The coverage this is likely to produce could see her move further in the betting and the polls and I’ve had a bit of a punt.