Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton is calling on the Democratic National Committee to allow the first debate between Clinton and Sanders on Sept. 26 in Cincinnati, Ohio, to be held before the next presidential debate in New Hampshire on Oct. 9.
The debate schedule is up to the DNC and the candidates, and the two campaigns agree to the debate date but have been talking about a date for a date to work with, the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee said in a statement Friday.
“It’s critical that we continue to work together to ensure that the Democratic candidates have a clear and fair debate schedule,” said Clinton campaign spokesman Jesse Ferguson in the statement.
“It’s a critical step for both campaigns to begin to get the debates out to as many people as possible.
We welcome the DNC to act quickly to move the debate to the next possible date.”
Sanders’ campaign said the DNC would allow it to debate before the Oct. 3 debate in Denver.
The campaign said it would not be willing to compromise on the date because the two candidates would like to have a debate that would include all of the issues that matter to voters in the fall.
“We think we have an excellent chance to do that,” said Sanders campaign spokesman Michael Briggs.
“We will continue to make clear that the DNC should allow this debate to be rescheduled if the DNC’s leadership can’t come to an agreement,” Briggs said.
The first Democratic debate between Sanders and Clinton is scheduled for Sept. 12 in Cleveland.
The event will feature a forum moderated by CNN’s Anderson Cooper, with Clinton, Sanders and Biden taking the stage to debate the former secretary of state.
The candidates are scheduled to debate in the evening, with a second debate following.
In his statement, Sanders said he and Clinton are “working together on how we can ensure a fair, substantive and transparent debate.”
The two candidates are “trying to work through the logistics” of scheduling the debate, he said.
Sanders said the debate schedule could be “rescheduled” in the future, but he is not ready to put an exact date in writing.
He said he would support a debate with all of its topics, but would “certainly be willing” to work more closely with the DNC on the timing of that debate.