- The Washington Times - Sunday, December 13, 2015

The nine candidates on the main stage for Tuesday’s Republican presidential primary debate will include New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, who was relegated to the “kids table” in the previous debate, according to a line-up announced Sunday.

Mr. Christie was elevated to the prime-time event due to his surge in the polls in the early primary state of New Hampshire, according to debate host CNN, which set the rules for who will participate.

Billionaire businessman Donald Trump, who remains the GOP front-runner in most national polls, will return to the center podium on the debate stage in Las Vegas.

He will be flanked by retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson on his right and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz on his left, according to CNN.

The five remaining participants on the main stage will be Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, businesswoman Carly Fiorina, Ohio Gov. John Kasich and Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul.

The candidates in the early debate, whose poll numbers were too low for them to make it to the main stage, will be former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum, South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham and former New York Gov. George Pataki.

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