The second 2024 Republican presidential debate is scheduled for September 27 in California. However, the participation of former president Donald Trump is still uncertain.
Will former President Donald Trump participate?
Taking place at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation & Institute in Simi Valley, California, this debate follows last month's event in Wisconsin.
The Republican National Committee has selected the Fox Business Network, Univision, and Rumble as hosts, with the two-hour debate starting at 9pm ET (0100 GMT).
With stricter qualifying rules than the previous debate, only six candidates are expected to make it to the stage. Notably absent, once again, will be former President Trump, who intends to address autoworkers in Detroit during the debate.
The six candidates likely to participate include Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, former Vice President Mike Pence, former UN Ambassador and South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley, US Senator Tim Scott of South Carolina, biotech investor Vivek Ramaswamy, and former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie.
The smaller lineup allows for more candidate interactions and an opportunity to connect with voters.
Governor Ron DeSantis, once seen as a top contender, hopes for a standout performance to revitalise his campaign after facing declining poll numbers.
As Trump maintains a substantial lead in national polls, the focus for other candidates is securing the second-place spot, hoping Trump's legal challenges might create an opening.
Vivek Ramaswamy, known for his assertive style, is likely to face attacks, particularly from Nikki Haley and Mike Pence, who performed well in the previous debate.
The candidates are unlikely to target Trump directly, instead defending him and attacking President Joe Biden, who is currently under a formal impeachment inquiry in the Republican-controlled House of Representatives.
Univision's inclusion as a debate host highlights the importance of Hispanic voters. Candidates are expected to address economic issues and their plans to improve the financial prospects of Latino families, as Republican support among Latinos has been rising while Hispanic support for Biden has decreased.
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