When Republican candidates appear on Fox News, they can rest assured that the questions thrown their way will be, by and large, fairly accommodating. Donald Trump aside – who felt mistreated in the first Republican debate that he spent the next few weeks engaged in a bitter Twitter war with Fox News’ Megyn Kelly – the network essentially exists to ensure that Republicans have a safe space.
You get tougher questions than "how would you describe the Democratic frontrunner in two words?" when applying for a management position at Jimmy Johns, after all.
CNBC had no such compunctions, and after the candidates felt they were asked too many "gotcha" questions – see also: journalism – Republicans have banded together to ensure that their hands are held in future debates.
Many of their demands are to be expected. No candidate-to-candidate questioning. No political messages allowed in the audience. No “lightning round.” But concluding the list is an odd request.
"Can you pledge that the temperature in the hall be kept below 67 degrees?" reads the letter from top GOP lawyer Ben Ginsberg.
The strange demand could be related to the fact that many of the candidates have been sweating pretty visibly during the debates, and wiping one’s forehead while answering a question doesn’t exactly scream honesty.
Another possibility is that this all an attempt to curtail Donald Trump’s bullying.
"Marco Rubio, I’ve never seen anybody sweat like that," he said after the first debate.
Whatever the reason, Republicans are going to need to reach an audience beyond their base over at Fox News, which means they need the mainstream media more than the mainstream media needs them. If they want to win the general election, they may have to just sweat it out.