During Wednesday’s presidential debate, Hillary Clinton called for Americans to go online to search for “Donald Trump Iraq.”
People actually listened.
Mrs. Clinton’s suggestion came during a discussion about the Islamic State in Iraq and the offensive in Mosul.
She pointed to Donald J. Trump’s previous support of the war. Then she urged voters to fact-check her assertion for themselves.
“I just want everybody to go Google it,” she said. “Google, ‘Donald Trump Iraq.’ And you will see the dozens of sources which verify that he was for the invasion of Iraq.”
“Wrong,” Mr. Trump interjected.
To reinforce her point, Mrs. Clinton’s Twitter account also sent a missive:
Shortly after her comments, searches for the phrase spiked, according to search data from Google Trends. About an hour after the debate ended, the search engine provided data showing the phrase was searched significantly more than other topics discussed by the candidates.
This wasn’t the first time the issue has come up in a presidential debate. In the first one, in September, Mr. Trump said he opposed the war in Iraq before it started. During the second meeting, on Oct. 9, Mrs. Clinton said Mr. Trump supported the war in Iraq before it began. On both occasions, The Times’s Steve Eder checked the facts. Here’s what he wrote during the second debate:
Hillary Clinton rejected Donald J. Trump’s contention that he opposed the war in Iraq before it began, saying that his assertion had been “debunked.” Mr. Trump, though, continued to say that he was against the war. But Mrs. Clinton’s assertion was correct: Audio unearthed by BuzzFeed revealed Mr. Trump, speaking in an interview with Howard Stern, voiced his support during the lead-up to the war.
Source: New York Times