The CNBC Republican debate was an unmitigated disaster for the GOP. The liberal moderators spent all evening bashing the candidates and trying to get them to attack each other. It had gotten so bad that Ted Cruz called out the moderators to great applause from the crowd and repeated every attack that they had hurled at the candidates.
Since the debate, the GOP has suspended their relationship with NBC. Representatives from 11 of the candidates campaigns have worked together to craft a list of demands and terms for the remaining debates. In true Donald Trump form, he brushed their collective efforts aside to put together a deal of his own.
According to the Washington Post, Trump and his advisors are circumventing the Republican candidates and approaching television executives directly to negotiate the format and content of the remaining Republican debates.
Ben Carson’s campaign manager, Berry Bennett, was unfazed by Trump’s side deal. “If they want to send their own letter, that’s fine. A letter’s a letter,” Bennett said, “The Trump folks were clear about what they wanted, and the Carson campaign agrees with them 90 percent of the time. We’re getting opening and closing statements. We’re going to get some parity in questions. We’re going to actually get formats announced to the campaigns. Trump’s basically asking for the same thing, he’s just going to do with his own letterhead.”
It is yet to be seen what Trump’s demands will bring forth. The media is likely to cater to his demands as all three debates so far have brought in record amounts of viewers.