Flake, Kobach to take part in GOP debate about Trump

Flake, Kobach to take part in GOP debate about Trump
© Stefani Reynolds

Former Sen. Jeff FlakeJeffrey (Jeff) Lane FlakeProfiles in cowardice: Trump's Senate enablers McSally concedes Arizona Senate race The Hill's Morning Report - ObamaCare front and center; transition standoff continues MORE (R-Ariz.) and former Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach (R) will be among conservatives debating whether President TrumpDonald John TrumpMinnesota certifies Biden victory Trump tells allies he plans to pardon Michael Flynn: report Republican John James concedes in Michigan Senate race MORE should receive the GOP nomination for president again in 2020.

Intelligence Squared announced in a press release Wednesday that Flake would join New York Times columnist Bret Stephens in a debate pitting them against Kobach and Fox News columnist Liz Peek on March 28.

Flake and Stephens will argue that Republicans should find a new nominee, while Kobach and Peek will argue the GOP needs to stick with Trump. 


The four will debate in front of a live studio audience, which will then get to vote on which side presented a more persuasive argument, according to the release.

"As Americans gear up for the 2020 presidential election, Republicans have a choice: Should Donald Trump be their nominee? Such a decision would have some historical precedent, though no sitting president has been denied his party's nomination since the 1800s," reads the press release.

Flake, who now works as a CBS News contributor, left the Senate in January after declining to stand for reelection in 2018.

Like Stephens, Flake was often critical of Trump's positions during his time in the Senate.

Kobach, who lost an election for Kansas governor in November, previously served as the state's secretary of state as well as a member of Trump's presidential transition team.

Flake previously announced that he would not launch a bid for the White House in 2020, while declaring last year that he plans to remain active in politics.

“I have always said that I do hope that there is a Republican who challenges the president in the primary. I still hope that somebody does, but that somebody won't be me. I will not be a candidate,” Flake told "CBS This Morning" in January.