Conservatives may argue over which candidate won Wednesday night’s GOP presidential debate, but by and large, they agree that CNBC, the network that hosted the event, and its moderators, were the biggest losers. Twitchy posted a number of tweets from notable conservative figures who hammered the hostile moderators for their overt bias.
“CNBC moderators got hit by a Cruz missile,” Fox News’ Todd Starnes tweeted after Cruz slammed moderators, telling them their actions illustrate why so many no longer trust the media. His criticism and comparison to the softball questions lobbed at Democratic candidates received wild applause from the crowd.
“You know, let me say something at the outset. The questions that have been asked so far in this debate illustrate why the American people don’t trust the media,” he said, according to a transcript of the debate. “This is not a cage match,” he added. “And, 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?'”
Throughout the debate, moderators displayed an open hostility to the candidates, and was even chastised by former CNN talk show host Piers Morgan, who is hardly a friend of conservatives. “Come on CNBC moderators, get your damn facts right,” he tweeted. “This is embarrassing.” Another Twitter user posted a picture of a train wreck, calling it an “actual picture” of the CNBC moderators.
“Even liberal reporters in the press room are groaning about how terrible these CNBC moderators are,” tweeted Erick Erickson. “We get it, @CNBC moderators, you oppose all the GOP candidates,” added Jon Gabriel. “So why are you moderating our primary debate?”
“So this is a debate between the CNBC moderators and the GOP candidates. Got it,” said Tammy Bruce. “Apparently CNBC moderators are also contestants in the debate,” tweeted Seattle radio talk show host David Boze.
Brent Bozell, president of the Media Research Center, called the debate a “encyclopedic example of liberal media bias.” He started by castigating the moderators, saying they acted more like Clinton campaign operatives than real journalists.
“What was supposed to be a serious debate about the many issues plaguing our economy was given up for one Democratic talking point after another served up by the so-call ‘moderators,'” he said. “They clearly war-gamed this thinking that a relentless series of personal attacks on the candidates would somehow drive their ratings and help Hillary Clinton.”
“The CNBC debate will go down in history as an encyclopedic example of liberal media bias on stage,” he added. “The audience roared its disdain for these so-called ‘journalists,’ and all of America heard it. CNBC should be embarrassed for their pitiful display of partisan liberal media bias and apologize to the GOP candidates and the American people.”
In August 2011, we first referred to the so-called “mainstream media” as the “Democrat-media complex.” Performances like those given by CNBC’s debate moderators would seem to justify that characterization.