Ahead of the New Hampshire primary next week, Republican presidential candidates will take to the stage to debate Saturday in the state's most populous city, Manchester. The event could play a key role in the vote scheduled for Tuesday.
The story of the night likely will be centered on three candidates: Iowa caucuses victor and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, businessman Donald Trump and Florida Sen. Marco Rubio. Despite Trump heading into the caucuses leading in the polls, Cruz earned 27.6 percent of the vote in Iowa to The Donald's 24.3 percent. Rubio was a close third at 23.1 percent.
Trump, in typically outspoken fashion, has since gone on to accuse Cruz of stealing the victory by spreading information that retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson had dropped out of the race and by sending out controversial mailers. The spat between the two could provide interesting fodder for Saturday's event.
Toward the end of the week, Trump was leading the GOP field in New Hampshire by a large margin, according to the Real Clear Politics average of polls. Trump came in at 32.8 percent support, followed by Rubio at 11.8 percent, Cruz at 11.3 percent, Ohio Gov. John Kasich at 11 percent, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush at 9.3 percent and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie at 6.3 percent.
But as WBUR, Boston, put it: "New Hampshire polling often goes nuts in the week before voting," meaning the results of next Tuesday's vote are far from decided. In the past, for instance, Democratic candidate John Kerry went from down 11 points in 2004 to up 9 points in one week, and eventually won the primary by 12 points.
As the GOP field has slowly thinned, Saturday's debate put on by ABC News will be the first not to feature an undercard debate with lower polling candidates. The qualifying criteria decided by ABC has left businesswoman Carly Fiorina and former Virginia Gov. Jim Gilmore out of the event. Fiorina has lobbied to be allowed back on stage. Read below for the info needed to watch the Republican debate.
Date: Saturday, Feb. 6
Start Time: 8 p.m. EST
TV Channel: ABC
Online: ABC News' live stream site can be found here.