Caitlin MacNeal

Caitlin MacNeal is a News Writer based in Washington, D.C. Before joining TPM, Caitlin interned and wrote for the Huffington Post, the Sunlight Foundation and Slate. She is a graduate of Georgetown University.

Articles by Caitlin

The Republican candidates were quick to criticize the CNBC moderators after Wednesday night's Republican presidential debate, but some are now looking to the Republican National Committee to make changes in the future.

Ben Carson's campaign manager, Barry Bennett, told the Washington Examiner on Wednesday night that he plans on contacting other campaigns about issues with the debate formats.

"I think the families need to get together here, because these debates as structured by the RNC are not helping the party," Bennett told the Examiner. "There's not enough time to talk about your plans, there's no presentation. It's just a slugfest. All we do is change moderators. And the trendline is horrific. So I think there needs to be wholesale change here."

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Following criticism from candidates and commentators about the Wednesday night CNBC Republican presidential debate, CNBC's John Harwood joked that he now understands the "challenges" faced by the speaker of the House.

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The hosts of "Fox and Friends" on Thursday morning criticized the moderators of the CNBC Republican presidential debate, then gave Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) a chance to get "to the issues" by asking about Benghazi.

"It seems universal the big loser was CNBC. What kind of agenda did they have going, going into that debate with you guys last night?" co-host Steve Doocy asked Rubio on Thursday morning.

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Former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) on Thursday tore into the moderators at the CNBC Republican presidential debate, arguing that GOP candidates will never be treated fairly on the debate stage.

"They want us to kill each other," he said on MSNBC's "Morning Joe." "The moderators just didn’t do their job last night in a number of areas. Not only were the questions snarky and divisive and non-substantive, they were just biased. The questions were biased. But on top of that, they didn’t do their job in terms of controlling the debate either. And it became somewhat of a free-for-all that everybody had to jump in when they could jump in."

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Two of the moderators of the CNBC Republican presidential debate, John Harwood and Sharon Epperson, defended their questions on Wednesday night following criticism from the Republican National Committee and the candidates themselves.

RNC Chairman Reince Priebus lambasted the network and said CNBC should be "ashamed of how this debate was handled." And numerous candidates complained during and after the debate that the moderators did not ask enough substantive questions.

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Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) on Tuesday night played a game of "date, marry, or make disappear forever," tasked with choosing between Sarah Palin, Carly Fiorina, and Hillary Clinton.

During CNN's Politics on Tap event, Dana Bash asked the Republican to make a decision, and he reluctantly categorized each politician.

He told Bash he would date Palin, adding, "We'll go hunting on our first date."

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Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI), who will likely be elected speaker of the House this week, announced on Wednesday morning that he will support the deal to raise the debt ceiling and set a two-year budget, despite his comments on Tuesday that the process Congressional leaders used to reach the deal "stinks."

"Once again, we are facing a hard deadline and few good options. There is no doubt that a better process would have produced a better result. If I’m elected speaker, we will begin a conversation about how to approach these big issues — as a team — long before we reach these kinds of deadlines. We simply can’t keep doing business this way," Ryan wrote in a statement.

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Fox News contributor Charles Krauthammer on Tuesday dismissed House Republicans resolution to begin impeachment proceedings for IRS Commissioner John Koskinen, noting that none of the Republican investigations into the Obama administration have been successful.

"This is not going to end well," he said on Fox's "Special Report." "Republicans in the Congress have shown that they have no ability to conduct successful investigations of this administration. Everything they have touched has failed or backfired, even Benghazi."

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A day ahead of the Wednesday night CNBC Republican presidential debate, some of the campaigns were already complaining about the working conditions provided for the candidates, according to Politico.

The Republican National Committee and CNBC had previously altered the debate format, limiting it to two hours and adding opening and closing statements, following complaints from frontrunners Ben Carson and Donald Trump, as well as from Sen. Rand Paul's (R-KY) campaign.

Now, some of the candidates lower in the polls raised concerns that their greenrooms at the Coors Event Center in Boulder, Colorado, were smaller than those provided for the candidates who poll higher.

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Citing immigration as a critical issue facing America, Rep. Mo Brooks (R-AL) asked Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) to agree to specific limitations on immigration policy in exchange for his support of Ryan's speaker bid.

"Immigration is far and away the most important problem facing America because it changes the voter pool, thereby controlling the outcome of every single public policy challenge America faces," Brooks said in an interview with TPM.

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