Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) blasted CNBC moderators during Wednesday night's GOP debate because, he said, they weren’t asking substantive questions.
Here’s what’s interesting about that: The question that prompted the reprimand concerned the new spending agreement between the White House and Congress.
Given his vehement opposition to a past agreement to fund the government, Cruz was asked whether he was the kind of problem solver the American people needed. He answered with a diatribe against the media.
And that wasn’t an isolated question. Ben Carson and Donald Trump both got questions about their tax plans, which experts say would drive up the deficit massively. Carly Fiorina got a question about her record as CEO at Hewlett-Packard. Just now, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee got questions about entitlements and the deficit.
Blaming the media is always popular, particularly with conservative audiences, and Cruz got huge applause for his retort.
"The questions asked so far in this debate illustrate why the American people don't trust the media," he said.
"This is not a cage match," he continued, listing the questions to different GOP candidates to which he objected.
"How about talking about the substantive issues that people care about?" Cruz asked.
As host Carl Quintanilla pressed him to answer the question about the debt limit, Cruz accused moderators of going easier on Democratic candidates in their first debate earlier this month.
He criticized "the contrast with the Democratic debate, where every fawning question from the media was 'Which one of you is more handsome and wise?'"
After using up his allotted speaking time, he seemed ready to answer the original question that was posed to him, but debate moderators, over Cruz's objections, moved on.
But let the record show that it was Cruz, not the CNBC moderators, pushing the conversation away from substance.
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