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Tipsheet

Security Logistics Leave Thousands of Seats Empty at Early GOP Debate

If you watched the 5 p.m. GOP presidential debate Thursday evening, hosted by Fox News and held for the seven candidates who didn't make it into the top 10 primetime debate at 9 p.m., you probably noticed the lack of an audience. 

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Throughout the hour, candidates and moderators Bill Hemmer and Martha MacCallum were met with echos after statements and a stark view of empty seats behind them, leading many to ask why a significant audience wasn't present. 

According to the RNC, there wasn't a large audience due to security and logistics issues. 

"To get 4500 people and 17 candidates and their staffs in and out safely through three levels of security between events would have been logistically impossible," RNC Communications Director Sean Spicer tells Townhall. "Nor would it have made sense to ask 4500 people to arrive by 3:30 on a Thursday and sit for seven and a half hours."

According to another source, only friends and family of candidates were allowed to attend.

 

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