Hillary Clinton is ready to squeeze one more last-minute debate into the campaign schedule, and Bernie Sanders now says he'd welcome another debate, albeit with some conditions.
"Sen. Sanders is happy to have more debates but we are not going to schedule them on an ad hoc basis at the whim of the Clinton campaign," his campaign said in a statement Wednesday night. "If Secretary Clinton wants more debates that's great. We propose three additional debates. One in March, April and May and none on a Friday, Saturday or holiday weekend. And all of the three Democratic candidates must be invited. If the Clinton campaign will commit to this schedule, we would ask the DNC to arrange a debate in New Hampshire on Feb. 4."
Clinton's campaign has not yet responded to Sanders' counter-proposal.
- Skipping the GOP debate: What's at stake for Donald Trump
- What Donald Trump will be doing instead of Fox News debate
- In depth: The 2016 presidential campaign
Earlier this week, when the Union Leader announced it would host a new Feb. 4 debate with MSNBC, Clinton and Martin O'Malley readily accepted, but Sanders, who leads New Hampshire polls, initially nixed it.
"I'm ready for the debate, and I hope Sen. Sanders will change his mind and join us," Hillary Clinton said in an interview with MSNBC's Chis Matthews, on "Hardball" Wednesday. "I think the DNC and the campaigns should be able to work this out. I've been for, you know, for a long time, that I'd be happy to have more debates, and I hope we can get this done."
Sanders' spokesperson, Symone Sanders, had said he didn't want to be barred by the Democratic National Committee (DNC) from the next debate. The DNC refused to sanction the Union Leader/MSNBC debate, which would take place Feb. 4, and it has said candidates participating in unsanctioned debates would forfeit their ability to be in any of the remaining debates.
If Clinton and Sanders can come to an agreement, the party will have to revisit the issue. O'Malley has consistently complained that there aren't enough debates and has even suggested that the DNC limited the number of debates to tip the scales in favor of front runner Hillary Clinton.
There have been four Democratic debates so far, and there are two more debates slated to take place in mid-February and early March. No sanctioned debates are currently scheduled between the Feb. 1 Iowa caucuses and the Feb. 9 New Hampshire primary. The Union Leader pointed out that there's been a debate in New Hampshire between the Iowa caucuses and the New Hampshire primaries in every cycle with a contested election since 1984.