Earlier posting....@CNBC has just agreed that the debate will be TWO HOURS. Fantastic news for all, especially the millions of people who will be watching!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 16, 2015
Republican front-runners Donald Trump and Ben Carson are threatening to pull out of the next Republican primary debate if the hosts don't agree to their demands, according to CNN's Dylan Byers.
In a letter to CNBC, which is hosting the next debate, the two candidates said they would not participate in the Oct. 28 debate "if it is longer than 120 minutes including commercials and does not include opening and closing statements."
In a conference call between Republican National Committee officials and top advisers to the presidential campaigns on Thursday, Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski also said that Trump would consider skipping the debate if his terms were not met.
Top aides to Senators Ted Cruz and Rand Paul also insisted that the debate feature opening and closing statements, with Paul aide Chris LaCivita saying at one point that CNBC could "go f--- themselves" if they weren't willing to agree to those terms, according to two sources on the call.
The demand for opening and closing statements reflects the candidates' interest in getting their messages out unchallenged. The demand for a two-hour debate comes in the wake of CNN's decision to extend the previous GOP debate to three hours, leaving some of the candidates visibly exhausted