Carl Quintanilla, Becky Quick, John Harwood to Moderate CNBC GOP Debate

By Chris Ariens 

With record-breaking viewership for the first two Republican primary debates, CNBC is hoping for a historic night of its own.

The NBCU network will hold the next GOP primary debate four weeks from tonight at the University of Colorado Boulder. CNBC anchors Carl Quintanilla and Becky Quick and chief Washington correspondent John Harwood will moderate the RNC-sanctioned debate which will focus on business and the economy.

Like the first two debates on Fox News and CNN, the CNBC debate will be divided into two parts with two groups of candidates. The first, at 6 p.m. ET, will include candidates with an average of at least one percent in a select group of national polls. The second debate, with the top tier candidates who poll at least three percent in the polls, will take the stage at 8 p.m. for a two hour debate.

CNBC on-air editor Rick Santelli–who many call the father of the Tea Party–along with senior personal finance correspondent Sharon Epperson and Mad Money host Jim Cramer will also question the candidates on major policy issues.

Former CNBC anchor Maria Bartiromo, now with FBN, moderated CNBC’s GOP debate during the 2012 cycle, on Nov. 9 2011. That debate was watched by 3.3 million viewers.

“We focus on money—from financial markets and economies around the world to the most fundamental pocketbook issues involving savings and retirement,” said Mark Hoffman, CNBC Chairman. “Financial freedom, entrepreneurship and job growth are core to Americans’ decision-making process when they cast their vote.”

CNBC’s Joe Kernen and Kelly Evans will host special programming leading up to the debate featuring a roster of CNBC’s top reporters and contributors, including Larry Kudlow, who may be running for office himself.