Social media has spoken and Bernie Sanders is the winner of Tuesday’s Democratic Presidential debate.
At least that’s what polls conducted by CNN, Slate and Time suggest. All three major publications published stories declaring Hillary Clinton the clear winner of the debate, but viewers said it was the outspoken Vermont senator who took the night.
Sanders raked in a staggering majority of all three polls, with Hillary Clinton coming in a distant second and Martin O’Malley, Jim Webb and Lincoln Chafee barely registering.
In addition, Sanders picked up more social media followers than any of his fellow Democratic candidates. He added 35,000 new fans on his Facebook page according to Time, on top of being the top-searched candidate on Google during the debate.
He also added another 35,000 followers on Twitter, more than all his competitors combined, according to Forbes.
As far as the punditry were concerned, Hillary won on substance, with CNN’s Van Jones remarking afterward, “Hillary Clinton was Beyoncé. She was flawless.”
Politico called it “a runaway victory for Clinton,” based on its bipartisan survey of activists, operatives and strategists, with 79 percent of Democrats and 54 percent of Republicans scoring her the winner. The Washington Post asserted that Clinton “solidified her status as the Democratic frontrunner.”
But Sanders seemed to score big points for surprisingly coming to Clinton’s defense when questions arose over her use of a private email server during her time as secretary of state.
“Let me say something that may not be great politics, but I think that the secretary is right,” Sanders said to thunderous applause. “And that is that the American public is sick and tired of hearing about your damn emails,” adding, “Enough of the emails!”