Rubio Clear Winner in Poorly Conducted Third GOP Debate by CNBC

Senator-Marco-Rubio.jpgCNBC received low ratings as a host to the third Republican Party's Presidential Nominee debate in Boulder, CO Wednesday night (Oct. 28), but the business-oriented cable network still laughed all the way to the bank.

CNBC charged advertisers $250,000 for a 30-second commercial compared to its regular $5,000 per ad, according to several television industry insiders.

The audience at the University of Colorado's Coors Event Center were not impressed and more than a little annoyed at the network's moderators who stole a portion of the debaters' stage time with idle chatter and political chatter that made sense only to them.

When the two-hour event ended, the 10 delegates were equally upset with the moderators, including Sen. Marco Rubio and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush. They shone in the only legitimate sparring match of the evening. It was difficult to assess the debate winner, largely due to the inept interruptions by the CNBC moderators.

Sen. Ted Cruz especially was not comfortable with the moderators. He told CNBC anchor Carl Quintanilla,  "The questions that have been asked so far in the debate illustrate why the American people don't trust the media...this is not a cage match."

He told the moderator, "You look at the questions: 'Donald Trump, are you a comic book villain?' 'Ben Carson, can you do math?' 'John Kasich, will you insult two people over here?' 'Marco Rubio, why don't you resign?' 'Jeb Bush, why have your numbers fallen?' "

Cruz added, "How about talking about the substantive issues people care about?"  The audience applauded loudly.

But Cruz wasn't the only CNBC basher Wednesday night.

When CNBC anchor and moderator Becky Quick asked Trump why he's been critical of Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg's stance on immigration reform, Trump said he hadn't been, when, in fact, he had been. Quick said she had forgotten where and when Trump had said that.  She asked Trump:  "Where did I read that, then?"

Trump shot back: "You people write this stuff. I don't know," Trump said.

In his closing statement, Trump said the network had wanted the debate to be three and a half hours long, but he and Ben Carson wouldn't stand for that.

"We called in, we said, 'that's it. We're not doing it...' Everyone said it couldn't be done. In about two minutes, I renegotiated it to two hours so we could get the hell out of here."

CNBC anchor John Harwood responded by saying that the debate was always going to be two hours, to which Trump stared him down and said, "That's not right. That is absolutely not right. You know that. That is not right." Harwood didn't respond.

Even Republic National Committee chairman Reince Preibus got in the on CNBC-bashing. He said the network's performance was "extremely disappointing".
In the Bush-Rubio skirmish, Bush went after Rubio for missing votes in the Senate while running for the White House.

"Marco, when you signed up for this, this was a six-year term and you should be showing up to work," Bush said. "What is this, like a French work week?"
Bush added, "Just resign and let someone else take the job."

Rubio fired back: "You never criticized Sen. John McCain missing votes when he was running for president." He said, "The only reason you're doing it now is because we're running for the same position."

"I'm running with heart," Bush said. "I'm not a performer. If you're looking for an entertainer in chief, I'm probably not the guy."

The first real test for the debaters will come next month at the Iowa caucuses. The Iowa caucuses are an electoral event in which residents of the U.S. state of Iowa meet in precinct caucuses in all of Iowa's 69 precincts and elect delegates to the corresponding county conventions. There are 99 counties in Iowa, which means there are 99 conventions.

Talk about fireworks. That is where they will be.

And that's the way it is at this moment.

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