Sen. Ted Cruz received the highest Google search spike of any of the candidates during Tuesday night’s debate in Las Vegas, when answering the question whether he thinks Donald Trump can be trusted with the U.S. nuclear arsenal.
At a private campaign event in New York City last week, Cruz was recorded saying that while he likes and respects both Donald Trump and Ben Carson, he did not believe either of them would be the next president. “You look at Paris, you look at San Bernardino, it’s given a seriousness to this race, that people are looking for: Who is prepared to be a commander in chief? Who understands the threats we face?” Cruz asked.
He went on to say: “Who am I comfortable having their finger on the button? Now that’s a question of strength, but it’s also a question of judgment. And I think that is a question that is a challenging question for both of them.”
“Dana, what I said in private is exactly what I’ll say here, which is that the judgment that every voter is making of every one of us up here is who has the experience, who has the vision, who has the judgment to be commander in chief. That is the most important decision for the voters to make,” Cruz responded.
The senator added that the U.S. needs a commander in chief “who does what Ronald Reagan did with communism,” setting out a global strategy to defeat the ideology.
Google search interest in Cruz began to spike, as soon as he began his answer starting at 10:42 p.m on the chart below.
Bash pressed the Texas senator: “I just want to clarify what you’re saying right now is you do believe Mr. Trump has the judgment to be commander in chief?”
“What I’m saying, Dana, is that is a judgment for every voter to make. What I can tell you is all nine of the people here would make an infinitely better commander in chief than Barack Obama or Hillary Clinton,” Cruz replied. The audience apparently approved of Cruz’s decision not to take the bait and go after Trump; they responded in thunderous applause.
Donald Trump was the candidate who had the most search interest overall, far and away.