Moderator John Harwood couldn’t handle doing his job during the Republican Presidential debate Wednesday night. Instead of asking questions and letting the candidates debate the answers among themselves, he got into it himself with several of the candidates.
Harwood’s behavior wasn’t a total surprise. As Mollie Hemingway pointed out earlier this week, he is known to be unabashedly liberal and very biased against conservatives. Wednesday night, however, he reached a new low, particularly when he lied about Sen. Marco Rubio’s (R-Fla.) tax plan in an attempt to trip him up. He cited false statistics, even though he had previously tweeted about erroneously quoting his tax plan just weeks before.
But Rubio wasn’t the only candidate Harwood unfairly targeted. He wanted to know if Donald Trump was running a cartoon version of a campaign; he repeatedly interrupted Gov. Chris Christie, shoving words into his mouth as the governor attempted to respond; and he asked Mike Huckabee an odd question about moral authority — which was really an indirect attack on Trump — to which the audience booed loudly.
Here are seven of Harwood’s worst moments during the debate:
Several of the candidates pushed back against Harwood and his fellow CNBC moderators. Rubio pointed out that the media has acted like a super Political Action Committee for the Democratic Party. Ted Cruz also fired shots at the way the moderators were handling the debate questions. “This is not a cage match,” Cruz said. “How about talking about the substantive issues people care about?” The audience applauded and cheered appreciatively in response.
While the winner of Wednesday night’s debate is open for debate (pun intended), it’s clear that the biggest loser was Harwood and the other CNBC moderators.