In a letter to NBC News today, RNC Chairman Reince Priebus announced that the Republican Party was suspending its planned February debate on the network. Priebus made no secret why he’s pulling out, placing the blame squarely on CNBC’s disastrous moderating job this Wednesday: “The CNBC network is one of your media properties, and its handling of the debate was conducted in bad faith.”
You can read Priebus’ letter below:
Mr. Andrew Lack Chairman, NBC News 30 Rockefeller Plaza New York, New York 10112
Dear Mr. Lack,
I write to inform you that pending further discussion between the Republican National Committee (RNC) and our presidential campaigns, we are suspending the partnership with NBC News for the Republican primary debate at the University of Houston on February 26, 2016. The RNC’s sole role in the primary debate process is to ensure that our candidates are given a full and fair opportunity to lay out their vision for America’s future. We simply cannot continue with NBC without full consultation with our campaigns.
The CNBC network is one of your media properties, and its handling of the debate was conducted in bad faith. We understand that NBC does not exercise full editorial control over CNBC’s journalistic approach. However, the network is an arm of your organization, and we need to ensure there is not a repeat performance.
CNBC billed the debate as one that would focus on “the key issues that matter to all voters—job growth, taxes, technology, retirement and the health of our national economy.” That was not the case.