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Debate Ticket Giveaway Ends After Overwhelming Response

Quicken Loans Arena exterior in Cleveland
Quicken Loans Arena
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Ohio Republican Party Chairman Matt Borges says only about 4,500 seats will be available for next week's debate at Cleveland's Quicken Loans Arena.

Ohio Republicans say a free ticket offer for next week’s presidential candidate debate in Cleveland is being rescinded because of an overwhelming response. 

The online ticket process started Friday. Ohio Republican Party Chairman Matt Borges says only about 4,500 seats will be available. And many of them will be taken up by people in Cleveland for next week’s Republican National Committee summer meeting.

“We have other people who will be taking those tickets as well, so we wanted to make sure some ticket would be available to the public, some hundreds of tickets that would be made available, but not 7,000.

"We wanted to keep that process open until Friday the 31st which is what we originally announced, but we were just so overwhelmed by the people who emailed us we didn’t want to keep that open any further.”

People receiving the free online tickets will be notified this Sunday. Borges says a lot of the local interest stems from the likelihood Ohio Gov. John Kasich could on the debate stage. Kasich now ranks fourth among the candidates in New Hampshire’s polling. Only the top 10 polling candidates will be allowed into the debate.