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Campaign announces Steyer qualifies for South Carolina debate

Tom Steyer has qualified for Tuesday’s South Carolina presidential debate after failing to make the stage for last week’s debate in Las Vegas, the billionaire’s campaign announced Sunday.

A new CBS/YouGov poll that put Steyer at 18 percent in the Democratic field marked the second of the two necessary qualifying polls, the campaign said.

“The race for the Democratic nomination is far from over. We are now entering a critical phase in the primary and next Saturday South Carolina voters will finally have the chance to have their voices heard,” Steyer Campaign Manager Heather Hargreaves said in a statement.

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“They know that Tom is the only candidate in the race fighting to return power to communities left behind by Washington through specific policies, including reparations, direct democracy, and term limits for Members of Congress,” Hargreaves added. “On the debate stage Tuesday night, Tom will demonstrate that he is the only candidate who can expose Trump on the economy, put together a diverse coalition that can win in November, and break the corporate stranglehold over our government.”

The poll in question shows Steyer in third place behind former Vice President Joe Biden and Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.).  Biden’s lead in the Palmetto State has considerably diminished from earlier surveys, pollsters found, with the former vice president leading Sanders, 28 to 23 percent, after earlier leading all challengers by 30 points.

Last week’s debate in Las Vegas was the first in which  former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who, like Steyer, is bankrolling an advertising-heavy campaign using his personal wealth, appeared.

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