Rick Perry, the former governor of Texas, is not among the 10 Republicans running for president who will take part in the first primetime TV debate.
Donald Trump, Jeb Bush and Scott Walker will take the stage in Cleveland on Thursday night with seven rivals. Fox News selected the 10 most popular Republicans based on five national polls, excluding Mr Perry and South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham. Those two and five other candidates will take part in an earlier debate.
Former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum reacted angrily to his omission. “The idea that they have left out the runner-up for the 2012 nomination [Santorum], the former four-term governor of Texas [Perry], the governor of Louisiana [Bobby Jindal], the first female Fortune 50 CEO [Carly Fiorina], and the 3-term Senator from South Carolina [Graham] due to polling seven months before a single vote is cast is preposterous,” his spokesman said.
In contrast, Mr Perry tweeted that he was looking forward to being on Fox at 5pm for “a serious exchange of ideas and positive solutions to get America back on track”. The main debate takes place four hours later at 9pm local time (01:00 GMT). All eyes will be on hotel tycoon Mr Trump, who leads the polls and has made headlines with outspoken remarks about many of his rivals.
The Republican Top 10
Businessman Donald Trump
Former Florida Governor Jeb Bush
Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker
former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee
Surgeon Ben Carson
Texas Senator Ted Cruz
Florida Senator Marco Rubio
Kentucky Senator Rand Paul
Ohio Governor John Kasich
New Jersey Governor Chris Christie
A Guide To The 10 Republican Debaters
One of the Republican frontrunners, Jeb Bush, became embroiled in a row with leading Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton over women’s health funding on Tuesday. The former Florida governor was attacked by Mrs Clinton after he told a conservative Christian audience he wasn’t sure “we need half a billion dollars for women’s health issues”. But he later said he “misspoke” after criticism of his remarks.
2016 Runners And Riders
The early Republican frontrunner is Donald Trump. Hillary Clinton will have learnt much from her failed campaign of 2008. Florida senator Marco Rubio lost some right-wing fans by backing a bipartisan immigration reform package. Wisconsin governor Scott Walker appeals to both the Republican establishment and the Tea Party. Libertarian Rand Paul has his supporters – and enemies – among Republicans. Veteran congressman Bernie Sanders is running as a Democrat despite never formally being part of the party.