MSNBC, Washington Post to co-host November Democratic presidential debate

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By Dareh Gregorian  with NBC News Politics
Democratic presidential hopefuls stand onstage ahead of the third Democratic primary debate of the 2020 presidential campaign season in Houston, on Sept. 12, 2019.   -   Copyright  Frederic J. Brown AFP - Getty Images file

MSNBC and the Washington Post will co-host the fifth Democratic presidential primary debate in Georgia next month, MSNBC announced on Tuesday.

The debate will take place in prime time on Nov. 20, and will air live on MSNBC and across the Radio One network. It will also stream on and the Post's website, as well as across mobile devices via NBC News and the Post's mobile apps and Radio One's digital platforms.

The specific location, venue, format and moderators will be announced at a later date.

To qualify for the stage, candidates have to meet fundraising and polling criteria laid out by the Democratic National Committee one week before the debate.

The polling requirement is slightly different than the previous debates — it calls for candidates to hit at least 3 percent in four qualifying state or national polls or 5 percent in two qualifying state polls. The fundraising threshold requires candidates to have received contributions from 165,000 unique donors, including 600 unique donors in 20 states.

An unofficial survey by NBC News shows eight candidates appear to have qualified already — former Vice President Joe Biden, New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker, South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg, California Sen. Kamala Harris, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, billionaire Tom Steyer, Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren and entrepreneur Andrew Yang.

Former Housing Secretary Julián Castro, Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar and former Texas Rep. Beto O'Rourke all appear to have reached the donor requirement, but have not met the polling requirements.

All 11, plus Hawaii Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, have qualified for the fourth debate, which is scheduled for Tuesday at Otterbein University in Westerville, Ohio. It's being hosted by CNN and The New York Times, and had lower polling fundraising criteria. Candidates had to register at least two percent in four qualifying polls and receive donations from at least 130,000 online donors.

MSNBC, NBC News and Telemundo hosted the first of the debates back in June. Twenty candidates qualified for that debate, which was split into two back to back nights with 10 candidates.