NBC News Unveils Candidate Lineups for First Democratic Debate

NBC News
The lineup for the June 26th Democratic primary debate

A manual drawing was held at 30 Rockefeller Center on Friday morning to determine the order.

After months of anticipation, NBC News announced on Friday the lineup for the network's two-part Democratic candidates debate, to be held on June 26 and June 27 in Miami with MSNBC and Telemundo.

Ten candidates will appear in each debate. Their names were drawn randomly on Friday at the network's 30 Rockefeller Center headquarters. "One representative of each of the qualifying campaigns was invited to attend the draw along with DNC officials," the network said. "Campaign representatives saw their respective candidate’s paper slip with their name on it before it was folded and placed inside the box."

The network created two buckets of candidates, one with "those who polled on average at or above 2 percent through midnight on Wednesday, June 12" and one with "those who polled on average below 2 percent through midnight on Wednesday, June 12," and then picked from each bucket to create the two lineups.

The first night's lineup, which is seen as weaker than the second night's, includes Sens. Elizabeth Warren, Corey Booker and Amy Klobuchar, along with former congressman Beto O'Rourke. Late entrant Bill de Blasio, mayor of New York City, is also part of the event.

The second night includes the campaign's presumptive front-runner, Joe Biden, along with top candidates Bernie Sanders, Kamala Harris and Pete Buttigieg.

Both debates will be held at 9 p.m. on the East Coast and will run for two hours. Earlier this week, the network announced the debate moderatorsToday co-anchor Savannah Guthrie, Nightly News anchor Lester Holt, Meet the Press host Chuck Todd, MSNBC host Rachel Maddow and Telemundo anchor Jose Diaz-Balart.