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Republicans: CNBC "Should Be Ashamed" Over Handling of GOP Debate

Read the RNC's scathing statement

Liz Raftery

The Republican National Committee is up in arms about CNBC's handling of Wednesday's GOP debate.

RNC chairman Reince Priebus issued a statement immediately after the debate, saying the candidates were subjected to "deeply unfortunate questioning" from moderators Carl Quintanilla, Becky Quick and John Harwood.

"While I was proud of our candidates and the way they handled tonight's debate, the performance by the CNBC moderators was extremely disappointing and did a disservice to their network, our candidates, and voters," Priebus said, as reported by The Huffington Post. "I will fight to ensure future debates allow for a more robust exchange. CNBC should be ashamed of how this debate was handled."

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In response to Priebus' criticisms, a CNBC spokesperson told The Huffington Post: "People who want to be President of the United States should be able to answer tough questions."

Also displeased with the debate was former Florida governor Jeb Bush, whose campaign manager complained to CNBC that he wasn't given enough speaking time during the debate. (Bush spoke for less than seven minutes, while candidates Marco Rubio and Carly Fiorina each spoke for more than 10 minutes.

Candidates Chris Christie and Ted Cruz also criticized the moderators during the debate. Christie was irritated by a question about fantasy football, and Cruz cited CNBC's questions as a prime example of "why the American people don't trust the media." Donald Trump also weighed in, calling one question "ridiculous" and, at one point, challenging Quick to cite her source for comments he had allegedly made regarding Mark Zuckerberg. (She couldn't.)

Did you watch the GOP debate? Do you agree with the criticisms of CNBC's moderators?