Third-party candidates excluded from 1st presidential debate

At the very least, Johnson and Stein should be invited to take the stage for that September 26 debate.

"I would say I am surprised that the CPD has chosen to exclude me from the first debate, but I'm not", Johnson, former Republican governor of New Mexico said in a statement, according to The Hill. Neither third-party vice-presidential candidate qualified.

The commission will look at poll numbers again before deciding who qualifies for the second and third presidential debates in October. Johnson was at 8.4 percent and Stein at 3.2 percent.

Libertarian presidential candidate Gary Johnson speaks to supporters and delegates at the National Libertarian Party Convention, Friday, May 27, 2016, in Orlando, Fla.

Every voter in America will see Gary Johnson's name on the ballot when they vote on November 8. "These states could determine the outcome of the presidential election, and that's why we targeted them".

"At the time of its creation, the leaders of those two parties made no effort to hide the fact that they didn't want any third-party intrusions into their shows", Johnson said.

The candidates needed to make a 15% polling threshold across several major national polls in order to qualify for the debates.

In Wednesday's Quinnipiac poll, Clinton's support among 18- to 34-year -olds dropped from 55 percent against Trump (with 34 percent), to 31 percent when Johnson (29 percent) and Stein (15 percent) were included. "Yet, the Republicans and Democrats are choosing to silence the candidate preferred by those millions of Americans", he said in a statement.

In years past, nearly all polling was conducted by calling landlines, which have gone the way of the dinosaur.

Johnson had previously said that his campaign would be doomed if he couldn't get exposure in what is expected to be one of the most watched debates in history.

Johnson, meanwhile, aimed his frustration at the commission. Normally the Libertarian candidate has nothing to lose by generating media attention, but Johnson does have something to lose here - he could lose some of the anti-Trump conservative voters who are now backing him to McMullin when they realize that McMullin is a better fit for them ideologically.

In 2012, Democrat Barack Obama, running for re-election, and Republican Mitt Romney, the former MA governor, shared the stage.

And that's too bad, because though they may be their respective parties' nominees, Trump and Clinton are the least popular presidential nominees in modern history.

  • Archie Newman