CNN, ABC nix two debates, CNN plans Haley town hall

Ahead of the consequential New Hampshire GOP primary, CNN Anchor Jake Tapper will moderate a live CNN Republican Presidential Town Hall with former Ambassador Nikki Haley at 9pmET on Thursday, Jan. 18, 2024, from New England College in Henniker, New Hampshire — even as it and ABC had to cancel two planned debates.

CNN also announced that it is canceling a planned for Sunday, Jan. 21, 2024, because only Ron DeSantis has agreed to participate. Leading candidate Donald Trump has yet to attend any debate or any town halls outside of right-leaning media and Haley announced she would only participate in a future debate if Trump would appear.

That was apparently a no-go with the Trump camp and DeSantis can’t exactly debate himself without it becoming, essentially, a second town hall.

ABC News also announced it would cancel its planned Jan. 18, 2023 debate for similar reasons.

The event comes two days after candidate Ron DeSantis appeared on a separate CNN town hall. 

He and Haley trailed Trump, who nabbed just over half of all caucus nods, with DeSantis getting a slight edge on Haley — approximately two percentage points.