Fox Business Drops Huckabee, Christie from Main Stage in Upcoming GOP Debate

Fox Business Network has announced the lineup for its televised, Wall Street Journal co-hosted Nov. 10 Republican presidential debate at the Milwaukee Theater in Milwaukee, Wis.

In a departure from previous GOP debates, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee did not qualify for prime-time,” noted Fox Business. “Instead the 9 p.m. EST roster will feature real estate mogul Donald Trump; retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson; Florida Sen. Marco Rubio; Texas Sen. Ted Cruz; former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush; former HP (HPQ) CEO Carly Fiorina; Ohio Gov. John Kasich; and Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul.

The network’s junior varsity debate will begin at 7 p.m. EST and will feature Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, and former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee. South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham, former Virginia Gov. Jim Gilmore, and former New York Gov. George Pataki fell short of the polling required to qualify for the debate’s second stage and will be excluded from the event entirely.

[RELATED: Ad for Fox Business GOP Debate Blasts CNBC’s Debate Questions]

A Jeb Bush tweet, seen below, criticized Fox Business for excluding Lindsey Graham.

Christie and Huckabee tweeted responses to the news of their demotion to the network’s second stage.

MSNBC pointed out that Trump said that it would be “fair” for Fox Business to include Huckabee and Christie on the main stage.

According to The Hill, an adviser to former New York Gov. Pataki said that he is not dropping out of the race and will be appearing at campaign events in New Hampshire later this week.

Fox Business Network’s 7 p.m. undercard debate will last one hour and will be moderated by Fox Business anchors Sandra Smith and Trish Regan and Wall Street Journal Washington Bureau Chief Gerald Seib. The 9 p.m. prime time contest will run for two hours and will be moderated by Fox Business anchors Neil Cavuto and Maria Bartiromo and Wall Street Journal Editor-in-Chief Gerard Baker.

A midnight, post-debate episode of Stossel is set to feature a studio audience that will give what Fox Business characterizes as the “libertarian” reaction to the debate.

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