Republican Presidential Debate

Obama: If GOP Candidates Can't Handle CNBC, How Will They Deal With Russia and China?

Tim Stelloh
Obama blasts GOP candidates over CNBC debate

President Barack Obama lampooned the GOP's presidential candidates Monday, saying that their grumbling about last week's debate signaled their likely ineffectiveness on the world stage.

"Every one of these candidates says, 'Obama's weak, Putin's kicking sand in his face. When I talk to Putin, he's going to straighten out,'" Obama said during a democratic fundraiser in New York City.

"And then it turns out, they can't handle a bunch of CNBC moderators," he said. "If you can't handle those guys, I don't think the Chinese and the Russians are going to be too worried about you."

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Obama's comments came three days after the Republican National Committee canceled the next GOP debate, which was to be moderated by NBC News and Telemundo, and one day after an unprecedented Republican huddle during which the campaigns began negotiating new debate rules going forward.