Hillary Clinton did a very good job during the debates, as she was expected to, while Donald Trump had a hard time trying to decide if his open glove style is appropriate or not in the given circumstances (it was not and he was smart not to use it). Yet, despite winning the debate, Hillary Clinton has yet to reap the benefits. Two days after the debate, the Real Clear Politics poll of polls indicates that she only got half a percent (.5%) boost in preferences, while Donald Trump maintained the course. The paradox of a non-zero sum game can be explained by the slight drop in traction for the other two, minor, candidates, Stein and Johnson.
Other indicators are a bit more generous with Hillary Clinton, although the lead she is given is not very large. The Iowa University prediction market (a political futures market or “serious betting” on politics, if you want) suggests a slight increase in Clinton’s shares and equal decrease in Trump’s.
These changes are not reflected, however, in Google Search Trends. A significant spike in searches for Hillary Clinton the night of the debate was followed by a return to business as usual.
Searches for Trump have been just as frequent if not a bit more numerous as those for Hillary Clinton over the next two days after the debate. This should be considered against the backdrop of constant and higher presence of Donald Trump’s name in Google searches.
Google Trends Labs also offers a very interesting suite of visualizations about the campaign. They provide some great insights into what is going on under the “media” hood. For example, this map shows prevalence of YouTube views for each candidate at county level. If I were Hillary Clinton, I would worry. In four battleground Ohio, Pennsylvania, Florida, and Wisconsin Trump viewers dominate. Sure, they might be watching clips that deride Trump, but, hey, in his case the old dictum may apply more than ever “there is no such thing as bad publicity.”
It will be a long, hard slog this campaign.