The Republican National Committee on Friday announced a schedule for nine presidential debates beginning in August of this year. The committee is eager to have fewer debates than in the 2012 election cycle.
Three of the nine debates will be on Fox News or Fox Business, including the first debate, in Ohio in August.
The RNC noted that it is trying to have a "larger conservative media presence" pertaining to the debates.
"The committee chose to limit the number of debates, spread the debates across the country by sanctioning no more than one debate per state, allocate the debates over the course of seven months, include a larger conservative media presence and allow campaigns to know and plan for the debate schedule early," the RNC said in a statement.
There were 20 Republican primary debates in the 2012 cycle, a number that is now seen by many in the party as too high.
“By constructing and instituting a sound debate process, it will allow candidates to bring their ideas and vision to Americans in a timely and efficient way," RNC Chairman Reince Priebus said in a statement. "This schedule ensures we will have a robust discussion among our candidates while also allowing the candidates to focus their time engaging with Republican voters."
It appears that the Republican primary field in 2016 will be a large one, with many viable candidates. 2012 nominee Mitt Romney and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, are among those who seem to be heading towards entering the race
"It is exciting that Republicans will have such a large bench of candidates to choose from, and the sanctioned debate process ensures voters will have a chance to gain a chance to hear from them," Priebus said.
The final debate on the schedule is in February 2016, hosted by NBC and Telemundo in Florida. That is sure to provide a forum for candidates to be asked about their views on immigration.
Three more debates are "pending" later in 2016, including a "conservative media" debate.
The full schedule is below.
1. Fox News
4. Fox Business
6. Fox News
7. ABC News
8. CBS News
Conservative Media Debate