No previous primary debates centered on such unpopular candidates

There have been several previous primary debates that have featured unpopular candidates, such as the Republican debates of 2016 and 2020 and the Democratic debates of 2020. In the 2016 Republican debates, the candidates included Donald Trump, who had a historically low approval rating for a Republican nominee, and Ted Cruz, who was widely unpopular among Republican voters. In the 2020 Republican debates, President Trump was again a polarizing figure. The 2020 Democratic debate stage also featured a few unpopular candidates, such as Joe Biden, who faced broad criticism for his past policies and statements.

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