On December 14, Gary Johnson dismissed his lawsuit against the Commission on Presidential Debates. The case, which had been filed on October 18, 2012, just prior to the last major party presidential debate (held October 22), had alleged that Johnson satisfied the criteria for inclusion. The rules say that three polls must show that the candidate is at 15% or higher. Johnson submitted three polls, in which respondents were only asked if they preferred President Obama or Gary Johnson, and in all three polls, Johnson scored far higher than 15%.
Because the case had been filed so late, relative to the debate itself, no ruling was ever made in this case. Now that the election is over, Johnson and his attorneys saw no further need for the lawsuit.
It will be interesting to see if the Commission on Presidential Debates revises its rules before the 2016 election, to set forth rules on how many presidential candidates, and which candidates, must be included in the various polls that determine eligibility. It is conceivable that new rules would at least encourage pollsters to be more attentive to including all presidential candidates who are on the ballot in states containing enough electoral votes to be elected. Many leading polls do not bother to include anyone except the two major party presidential candidates.