Only two Republicans, Nikki Haley and Ron DeSantis, will take the CNN debate stage at Drake University in Des Moines on Wednesday night for the final televised clash before the Iowa caucuses next week.
The man they are both chasing, Donald J. Trump, is yet again skipping any debate in which his front-runner status could be challenged in person, instead taking part in counterprogramming on a rival network, Fox News, with a prime-time town hall of his own.
It’s exactly the sort of split screen that Mr. Trump has sought throughout the cycle: his rivals bickering among themselves while he presses his case without meddlesome interruptions.
Here are five things to watch.
Can Haley break a streak of slip-ups?
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