Four candidates will take part in the fourth Republican primary debate tonight, which again is expected to go ahead without the man widely expected to be the eventual nominee of the party.
Former President Donald Trump will not be on stage in Tuscaloosa, Alabama at 8pm this evening, instead spending the evening fundraising.
Those who will appear include Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, former South Carolina governor and UN Ambassador Nikki Haley, biotech entrepreneur and anti-woke author Vivek Ramaswamy, and ex-New Jersey Governor Chris Christie.
None of them seem able to take down Mr Trump, who appears to be in more trouble because of his myriad of legal woes compared to anything his challengers for the nomination have been able to come up with.
Mr Ramaswamy has previously served as a Trump stand-in, supplying outrageous outbursts and becoming the punching bag for more old-school Republicans like Mr Christie and Ms Haley.
The debate will be hosted by NewsNation – the subscription-based network will broadcast the showdown at 8pm on Wednesday.
The debate will also be broadcast on the CW network, as well as livestreamed on the video-hosting platform Rumble, which is popular among those on the right.
Democrat megadonor gives to Nikki Haley super PAC to help thwart Trump
Reid Hoffman, the billionaire co-founder of LinkedIn, donated $250,000 to a super PAC supporting the former UN ambassador’s 2024 campaign to be the GOP nominee in 2024.
Mr Mehlhorn told the outlet that the pro-Haley super PAC SFA Fund Inc was specifically asked if it would take money from a Democrat who actively supports President Joe Biden, and they said yes.
SFA Fund Inc is one of the biggest actors in the 2024 Republican primary race, having spent more than $33m on advertising and other expenses.
Its biggest contributors up to mid-2023 were Jan Koum, a co-founder of WhatsApp, who gave $5m, and the venture capitalist Tim Draper, who gave $1.25m.
Previously Mr Hoffman helped fund E Jean Carroll’s lawsuit against the former president when she sued him for rape and defamation. Mr Trump was found liable for sexual abuse and defaming Ms Carroll.
He also hosted a fundraiser for Mr Biden in California earlier this year; donated to vocal Trump foe Liz Cheney in 2022; and gave $3.35m to the Republican Accountability Project during the 2022 election cycle.
Oliver O’Connell7 December 2023 00:00
What the Republican candidates have said on the war in Ukraine: Chris Christie
Mr Christie supports sending US military aid to Ukraine and visited the country earlier this year.
Like Ms Haley, Mr Christie believes it is in the US’s best interest to support Ukraine.
“None of us like the idea that there’s a war going on and that we’re supporting it, but the alternative is for the Chinese to take over, the Russians, the Iranians and the North Koreans,” the former New Jersey governor said on CNN.
He noted that “some kind of compromise” with Russia may be required at some point and that the US should be part of the negotiations at a time when “Ukraine can protect the land that’s been taken by Russia in this latest incursion”.
He argued that Mr Trump “set the groundwork” for the invasion and echoed 2016 comments by former Secretary of State and then-Democratic Presidential nominee Hillary Clinton, calling him “Putin’s puppet”.
He compared Mr DeSantis to British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain, who unsuccessfully attempted to appease Adolf Hitler ahead of the Second World War.
Gustaf Kilander6 December 2023 23:30
Who qualified for the fourth GOP debate?
The debate will be broadcast on NewsNation, a subscription-based network, and it will be streamed online on Rumble, the video-hosting site mainly used by right-wing voters. The first three debates were hosted by Fox News, Fox Business, and NBC News.
Gustaf Kilander6 December 2023 23:00
Megyn Kelly’s rise was tied to Trump. Can she shine at a debate without him?
Megyn Kelly made headlines in 2015 when she confronted Donald Trump at a presidential debate. Now as the fourth GOP primary debate approaches, she could have another starpower moment as moderator — but it will have to be without the former president.
Kelly, a lawyer-turned-journalist, was moderating her first presidential debate when Mr Trump, a real-estate-mogul-turned-politician, was competing in his first GOP primary debate. In this potent interaction, their paths changed forever.
The exchange made her into something of a cultural icon and boosted her career, at least temporarily, while it set the tone for his soon-to-be successful campaign.
She is a lawyer, he’s in legal trouble. He was accused of sexual misconduct, while she was allegedly the victim of someone else’s. At almost every intersection, they are coming from opposite ends of the spectrum, but have each, separately, carved out a niche rightwing audience.
And when they come together, no one can turn away.
Kelly Rissman6 December 2023 22:30
What the Republican candidates have said on the war in Ukraine: Vivek Ramaswamy
Of the candidates, Mr Ramaswamy has displayed the most anti-Ukraine rhetoric calling the country anti-democratic.
In August, the tech entrepreneur suggested that the US is aiding Ukraine because of Hunter Biden’s foreign business dealings – a reference to unsubstantiated allegations made by congressional Republicans.
“I don’t think it is preferable for Russia to be able to invade a sovereign country that is its neighbour, but I think the job of the US president is to look after American interests,” Mr Ramaswamy told ABC News.
The reference was to an incident in September where Mr Zelensky applauded for a Ukrainian-Canadian veteran who was later found to have served in a Nazi-aligned military unit during World War II. Mr Zelensky, who is Jewish, lost family members during the Holocaust.
Gustaf Kilander and Ariana Baio6 December 2023 22:00
What the Republican candidates have said on the war in Ukraine: Nikki Haley
The former UN ambassador believes it is in the US’s best interest to support Ukraine.
“A win for Ukraine is a win for all of us because tyrants tell us exactly what they’re going to do,” she said on CNN.
Ms Haley has said that a Ukrainian victory would send a broader message to warn China about attacking Taiwan, that it would push Iran to not build nuclear weapons, and urge North Korea to move away from ballistic missile testing.
Gustaf Kilander6 December 2023 21:30
What the GOP debate candidates have said about the Israel-Hamas conflict
The onset of the Israel-Hamas conflict was a major theme of the third Republican primary debate on 8 November, with candidates declaring their support for Israel in varying degrees.
Since the war began in early October, there have been disagreements regarding how the US should back Israel as an ally while also trying to protect the innocent Palestinians caught in the crossfire.
Former president Donald Trump, who technically qualified, refused to join his opponents on stage. Though, Mr Trump has still voiced his opinion on the Israel-Hamas conflict.
Ariana Baio6 December 2023 21:00
What the Republican candidates have said on the war in Ukraine: Ron DeSantis
In March, Mr DeSantis called the war “a territorial dispute between Ukraine and Russia” and said it should not be one of the US’s national interests to get involved.
He faced backlash for diminishing the severity of the war and later clarified that he was only referring to the fighting in Donbas and Crimea when he called it a dispute.
Since then, Mr DeSantis has steered away from making too many comments on the war.
In April, he said he supported a ceasefire, saying it’s “in everybody’s interest”.
He told the Japanese English-language weekly Nikkei Asia that “You don’t want to end up in like a [Battle of] Verdun situation, where you just have mass casualties, mass expense and end up with a stalemate”.
Gustaf Kilander6 December 2023 20:30
What the Republican candidates have said on the war in Ukraine
As President Joe Biden likes to remind anyone who will listen, “This is not your grandfather’s Republican Party”.
For years, leaders in the GOP like George W Bush sounded alarms about Russia and supported Nato membership for Ukraine.
But in more recent years, notably under former president Donald Trump, modern conservatives have embraced isolationism.
A number of other Republican candidates, including Mr Trump – the current frontrunner, have expressed support for this.
Gustaf Kilander6 December 2023 20:00
VIDEO: What’s at Stake for Candidates in Tonight’s GOP Debate
What’s at Stake for Candidates in Tonight’s GOP Debate
Gustaf Kilander6 December 2023 19:30