Unless something miraculous happens in the polls before the December 13 deadline, Rand Paul is likely going to be relegated to the undercard debate while Chris Christie will move back to the main stage following a demotion for the last debate.
Candidates needed to average 3.5% nationally or 4% in either Iowa or New Hampshire in major polls between October 29 and December 13. Paul would need one more Iowa poll over 6% to qualify. Meanwhile, Christie has pulled off 6.8% in Iowa. Coincidentally, the two exchanged the most fireworks at the first GOP debate.
— Hasai (@hasai) December 11, 2015
In reality, neither should be on the main debate stage. Their campaigns are not working. Paul is all but finished and while Christie has been moving up in the polls, he’s still fourth or fifth among mainstream moderate Republicans. With Marco Rubio moving up slowly, Christie’s chances are slim. His best bet is to hope for an Attorney General appointment with the outside chance that he could be a Vice Presidential runningmate if the right nominee emerges.