Since this story was originally published, candidates Cory Booker, Beto O'Rourke, and Tom Steyer have confirmed attendance at CNN's LGBTQ+ Town Hall. The Human Rights Campaign confirmed the news in a Wednesday tweet.
On Sept. 10, Kamala Harris RSVPed to a separate forum presented by GLAAD, The Advocate, and One Iowa.
A number of candidates remain no-shows, however. Those names include Bernie Sanders and Andrew Yang, who have confirmed their attendance at neither the CNN town hall nor the GLAAD forum. O'Rourke, meanwhile, has not stated whether he plans to join the latter event, which is scheduled for Friday.
Both CNN and GLAAD are gearing up for town halls and presidential forums on LGBTQ issues — but not every candidate is interested in going. So far, the overwhelming majority of Democratic candidates have failed to confirm attendance for either of the events.
The CNN town hall, which was announced on Thursday, will be co-presented with the Human Rights Campaign on October 10, the night before Coming Out Day. It’s limited to candidates who poll at or above two percent in at least four prominent national polls, which excludes long-shot candidates like Ohio Congressman Tim Ryan, former Maryland lawmaker John Delaney, and Miramar, Fla. Mayor Wayne Messam.
GLAAD’s presidential forum, which will be held on September 20, is open to all candidates, regardless of polling.
Out of the 24 candidates running for president, Joe Biden, Pete Buttigieg, Julián Castro, Amy Klobuchar, and Elizabeth Warren are the only ones to confirm attendance at both events, with Buttgieg and Warren RSVPing to the GLAAD forum on Monday. None of the four Republicans running for president — Mark Sanford, Donald Trump, Joe Walsh, and William Weld — have announced plans to attend either debate.
At the time of publication, Cory Booker, Tulsi Gabbard, Joe Sestak, and Marianne Williamson have confirmed their attendance at the GLAAD forum, while Kamala Harris will be present for the HRC/CNN town hall.
More candidates may confirm their attendance in the weeks ahead, here’s a full list of candidates who have yet to confirm.
No-Shows for GLAAD Forum:
Bill de Blasio
No Shows for CNN Town Hall (excluding those who don’t meet the polling threshold):