Tyler Perry Studios Named the Site of Next Democratic Presidential Debate

By Zachary Stieber
Zachary Stieber
Zachary Stieber
Zachary Stieber is a senior reporter for The Epoch Times based in Maryland. He covers U.S. and world news.
November 4, 2019Updated: November 4, 2019

The recently opened Tyler Perry Studios will be the site of the next Democratic presidential debate, announced on Nov. 4.

The studios are located in Atlanta, Georgia.

The debate is slated to take place on Nov. 20.

Negotiations for the debate taking place in Atlanta started earlier this year, as Democratic officials hope to flip some seats and possibly the whole state blue.

“Georgia represents the future of the Democratic Party,” Nikema Williams, chairwoman of the state party, previously told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “We would love to see national candidates debate the issues in front of the Georgia voters who will take us to victory next year.”

Tyler Perry, known for producing a number of successful movies, is a longtime Democratic contributor. He donated $30,400 to the Democratic National Committee in 2009, $30,800 to the committee in 2012, and $35,800 to the Obama Victory Fund 2012 that same year.

Among his other contributions to Democrats, Perry gave over $10,000 to Sen. David Nunn (D-Ga.), according to federal election records.

Perry has also indicated support for Republican President Donald Trump; he’s donated nearly $1,000 to the Republican National Committee or the Trump Make America Great Again Committee.

biden vs warren
Former Vice President Joe Biden challenges Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) during the Democratic Presidential Debate at Otterbein University in Westerville, Ohio on Oct. 15, 2019. (Win McNamee/Getty Images)
Democratic Presidential Candidates In Ohio
Democratic presidential candidates on stage at Otterbein University in Ohio on Oct. 15, 2019. (Win McNamee/Getty Images)

According to the polls released so far, nine candidates have qualified for the debate so far: former Vice President Joe Biden; Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.); South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg; Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.); Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.); billionaire Tom Steyer; Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.); entrepreneur Andrew Yang; and Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.).

Two other candidates are close to qualifying: Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-Hawaii) and Julian Castro, a former cabinet secretary during the Obama administration.

The qualifying criteria, introduced by the Democratic National Committee, has two components: fundraising numbers and polling.

Candidates must get at least 3 percent support in four different state or national polls or at least 5 percent support in two qualifying state polls. Only polls from certain polling organizations are counted by the committee.

Candidates also need to get donations from at least 165,000 unique donors, including 600 unique donors in at least 20 states.

The Nov. 20 debate will feature four moderators: MSNBC hosts Rachel Madow and Andrea Mitchell, NBC reporter Kristen Welker, and Washington Post reporter Ashley Parker.

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