Former Vice President Mike Pence announced he will join the stage for the first round of Republican debates as the presidential campaign cycle ramps up.
On Monday, Pence’s 2024 presidential campaign said that earlier in the day they crossed the 40,000-donor threshold – one of two criteria set by the Republican National Committee for GOP White House hopefuls to reach the debate stage. Pence had already passed the polling threshold mandated by the RNC, according to Fox News.
The former vice president’s political team said they reached out to inform the RNC that Pence had qualified and spotlighted that they were the first campaign to submit their numbers for the national party committee’s verification process.
Pence becomes the eighth Republican presidential candidate to announce they’ve passed the thresholds to qualify for the debate. The other contenders who’ve already reached the criteria are former President Donald Trump, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, Sen. Tim Scott of South Carolina, former ambassador and former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley, former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, South Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum, and entrepreneur and best-selling author Vivek Ramaswamy.
Trump has yet to say if he’ll attend the first debate.
Recently, Trump has upped his attacks against his former running mate over recent comments he made regarding Trump’s ongoing legal battles from Jan. 6th.
“WOW, it’s finally happened! Liddle’ Mike Pence, a man who was about to be ousted as Governor Indiana until I came along and made him V.P., has gone to the Dark Side,” Trump wrote on Truth Social on Saturday.
“I never told a newly emboldened (not based on his 2% poll numbers!) Pence to put me above the Constitution, or that Mike was ‘too honest.’ He’s delusional, and now he wants to show he’s a tough guy,” Trump added, denying information that was contained in the indictment. “I once read a major magazine article on Mike. It said he was not a very good person. I was surprised, but the article was right. Sad!”
During a campaign stop in New Hampshire over the weekend, Pence was greeted by pro-Trump hecklers who derided the former vice president as a “traitor” and a “sellout.”