Republican presidential hopefuls are launching the campaign season with the first GOP debate on Thursday. But the South Carolina Republican Party had trouble convincing some politicians that the debate is a necessary step to the Oval Office. Many of the most recognizable potentials are opting out. Host Michel Martin speaks with NPR's Ken Rudin about what this debate means for the 2012 presidential race.
Top Contenders Skipping First GOP Debate
By NPR Staff • May 4, 2011