While his GOP 2016 rivals used their closing statements in Wednesday’s CNBC debate to lay out their vision for the country, Trump bragged about his reported hardball negotiations with the network to limit the debate to two hours.
“I went out and said, ‘It’s ridiculous, I could stand up here all night. Nobody wants to watch three and a half or three hours,'” Trump said.
He recounted: “In about two minutes I renegotiated it down to two hours so we can get the hell out of here. Not bad.”
Trump reportedly threatened to drop out of the debate if CNBC ran it longer than two hours, a threat Ben Carson’s campaign reportedly joined in on soon after. The two outsiders are currently leading the polls.
“I have to hand it to Ben. We called Ben. He was with me 100 percent. We called in. We said that’s it. We’re not doing it.” Trump said Wednesday.
Moderator John Harwood pushed back at Trump’s account and said the debate was always planned for two hours.
“That is not right. That is absolutely not right,” Trump insisted, as the audience booed.