- The Washington Times - Thursday, August 29, 2019

Rep. Tulsi Gabbard on Wednesday said the process behind the Democratic debates lacks “transparency,” but she vowed to press on in her presidential campaign whether or not she’s on stage.

“The whole process really lacks transparency,” Ms. Gabbard said on Fox News. “People deserve having that transparency because ultimately, it’s the people who will decide who our Democratic nominee will be and ultimately who our next president, commander-in-chief will be.”

“And when you see that lack of transparency, it creates a lack of faith and trust in the process,” she said, adding that there are also people losing faith and trust in the government because of a lack of transparency.

SEE ALSO: DNC faces criticism for stricter standards for presidential debates

“Whether I’m on that debate stage or not, I’m going to continue focusing on speaking directly to voters across this country, connecting with them and recognizing that no matter what the powers that be in Washington say, the power lies in the hands of the people of this country,” Ms. Gabbard said.

The Hawaii Democrat recently completed two weeks of active duty with the Army National Guard and is returning to the campaign trail.

Her campaign said she got the 130,000 individual donations she needed to get on the debate stage in September. But she was short of the 2% support she needed in four qualifying polls to make it.

The DNC has defended the metrics, saying candidates knew them well in advance and that the party has been transparent during the process.

Wednesday — the cutoff day for September’s debate — came and went with no new candidates qualifying, according to ABC, which is hosting the debate along with Univision.

That means 10 candidates are set to participate in the one-night event in Houston: former Vice President Joseph R. Biden; Sen. Cory A. Booker of New Jersey; Mayor Pete Buttigieg of South Bend, Indiana; former Obama administration official Julián Castro; Sen. Kamala D. Harris of California; Sen. Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota; former Rep. Beto O’Rourke of Texas; Sen. Bernard Sanders of Vermont; Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts; and entrepreneur Andrew Yang.

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