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Third-Party Presidential Candidates Debate Tonight On Larry King

Third-party presidential candidates Jill Stein (Green Party), Gary Johnson (Libertarian Party), Virgil Goode (Constitution Party), and Rocky Anderson (Justice Party) debate in Chicago Tuesday at 5:55 p.m. Pacific Time with Larry King moderating.

After three presidential debates and one vice-presidential debate between the Democratic incumbents and their Republican challengers, the third-party candidates are finally getting their national forum.

Tuesday at 5:55 p.m. (Pacific time), a televised debate among four third-party candidates will be moderated by longtime talk-show host Larry King.

Presidential nominees Jill Stein (Green Party), Gary Johnson (Libertarian Party), Virgil Goode (Constitution Party), and Rocky Anderson (Justice Party) will participate.

Twitter users are encouraged to use the hashtag #AskEmThisLarry to propose debate questions for King to pose to the third-party candidates.

The last third-party candidate to face Democratic and Republican nominees in a televised debate was independent Ross Perot in 1992.

The Commission on Presidential Debates, which sponsors debates between the major-party candidates (including this year's forums with Barack Obama and Mitt Romney), requires that a candidate be averaging at least 15 percent in national polls to be included.

Third-party candidates complain that's a hurdle that's almost impossible to clear before voters have a chance to hear their views.

"This commission exists for the principal purpose of protecting and strengthening the two parties," George Farah of Open Debates, a group that advocates changing the debate system, told NPR.

Stein was arrested outside this year's second presidential debate at Hofstra University after she attempted to enter the debate, calling it a "mockery of democracy," according to the Huffington Post. Johnson filed a lawsuit against the Commission in September, arguing that he'd been unfairly excluded from debating.

The debate at the Hilton Chicago is sponsored by the nonprofit Free & Equal Elections and will be telecast on the CSPAN channel, Al Jazeera and LINK TV and streamed at www.freeandequal.org/live and cspan.org, according to Free and Equal.

Are third-party candidates relevant in this year's presidential election? Would you vote for one? Tell us in the comments below.

Click here to read what local readers are saying about the Oct. 22 debate between President Barack Obama and Mitt Romney.

Lauren Vento October 23, 2012 at 05:45 PM
I've already voted for one of them. I will never vote for the Democrats or Republicans again. Too much corruption.
The Teller of Truth October 23, 2012 at 06:48 PM
What? Larry King is moderating? This should be hysterical!
Constant Comment October 23, 2012 at 07:48 PM
I think I'll put on my suspenders and watch this debate. Who knows, maybe one of them has better ideas for our country than our standard Rep & Dem candidates? }~)
TVOR October 23, 2012 at 09:43 PM
Its too damn bad a 3rd party candidate does not stand a snowball's chance of being elected. I think Obama and Romney both suck.
Chris October 23, 2012 at 11:52 PM
Where's rosie odonnell LMAO
Phil Osborne October 24, 2012 at 12:20 AM
@Constant Comment...obviously, the majority picked one from each of the most popular parties, democrat and republican. If your choice of a candidate is good enough, then that party's candidate will prevail. It worked for Ross Perot. A potential candidate running on a shoestring budget will never get the attention required to be chosen without the proper funding. I submit that all government funding be equal to recognized parties, or government stop funding elections altogether and let each candidate fend for themselves...
Ryan Filar October 24, 2012 at 02:20 PM
Delete the electoral college.
Major November 06, 2012 at 12:46 AM
I agree with you TVOR. As it stands, the only chance we have is voting against Obama and hope Romney repeals Obamacare and can be reasoned with and will honor his oath of office but Obama and Romney are a two headed snake..no dubt about it: http://i244.photobucket.com/albums/gg4/MajKarma/2HeadedSnake.jpg

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