Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI) confirmed that she will be participating in the Democratic debate on Oct. 15, just days after threatening to boycott the event due to, what she claims to be “DNC/corporate media’s effort to rig 2020 primary,” USA Today reports.
“The 2016 Democratic primary election was rigged by the DNC and their partners in the corporate media against Bernie Sanders,” the 2020 Democratic presidential candidate said in a video posted on Twitter. “In this 2020 election, the DNC and the corporate media are rigging the election again, but this time, it’s against the American people in the early voting states of Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina and Nevada.”
Gabbard went on to call the polling methods used by the DNC to determine which candidates participate in the debates, arbitrary and lacking in transparency, denouncing the debates as “commercialized reality television meant to entertain, rather [than] inform or enlighten.”
“In short,” Gabbard added,” The DNC and the corporate media are trying to hijack the entire election process.”
Gabbard changed course Monday morning, simply tweeting: “I will be attending the debate.”
As ESSENCE previously reported, Gabbard has qualified for Tuesday’s debate in Westerville, Ohio, but not for the fifth Democratic debate taking place in November in Georgia.
To participate, candidates must have four surveys of at least 3% in national or early-state polls or get at least 5 % support in two polls from the early states of Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada, and South Carolina, Fivethirtyeight.com reports. Candidates also need contributions from 165,000 unique donors—including at least 600 individual donors in at least 20 states.