Gabbard is most searched on Google after Democratic debate

GoogleTrends showed Rep. Tulsi GabbardTulsi GabbardFinancial firms facing serious hacking threat in COVID-19 era Gabbard drops defamation lawsuit against Clinton It's as if a Trump operative infiltrated the Democratic primary process MORE (D-Hawaii) as the most-searched candidate of Wednesday night's Democratic debate after entering the event in Miami as a relative unknown. 

Ahead of the debate, which was the first of two featuring 20 Democratic White House hopefuls, Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenCuba spells trouble for Bass's VP hopes Democrats want Biden to debate Trump despite risks Overnight Defense: Embattled Pentagon policy nominee withdraws, gets appointment to deputy policy job | Marines, sailor killed in California training accident identified | Governors call for extension of funding for Guard's coronavirus response MORE (D-Mass.) was the most searched candidate of the 10 hopefuls who would appear on stage on Wednesday, while Gabbard was the fourth-most searched. Sen. Cory BookerCory Anthony BookerUSAID appointee alleges 'rampant anti-Christian sentiment' at agency OVERNIGHT ENERGY: EPA rule extends life of toxic coal ash ponds | Flint class action suit against Mich. officials can proceed, court rules | Senate Democrats introduce environmental justice bill Senate Democrats introduce environmental justice bill MORE (D-N.J.) and former Rep. Beto O'RourkeBeto O'RourkeBeto O'Rourke calls Texas GOP 'a death cult' over coronavirus response Hegar, West to face off in bitter Texas Senate runoff Bellwether counties show trouble for Trump MORE (D-Texas) were second and third, respectively.

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During the debate, Gabbard moved into the top most-searched spot, followed by Booker.

Warren, who has been steadily climbing in the polls in recent weeks, was third most searched during the event.

Gabbard, an Iraq War veteran, is polling at just 0.8 percent in the RealClearPolitics index of polls while trailing front-runner former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenTrump campaign emails supporters encouraging mask-wearing: 'We have nothing to lose' Cuba spells trouble for Bass's VP hopes Democrats want Biden to debate Trump despite risks MORE by more than 31 points.

Gabbard's most visible moment of the evening came in an exchange with rival Rep. Tim RyanTimothy (Tim) RyanThe Hill's Coronavirus Report: HHS Secretary Azar says US plans to have tens of millions of vaccine doses this fall; Kremlin allegedly trying to hack vaccine research Democrats see victory in Trump culture war House Democrat calls for 'real adult discussion' on lawmaker pay MORE (D-Ohio) after he said the Taliban was behind the 9/11 attacks.

“The reality of it is if the United States is not engaged, the Taliban will grow. And we will have bigger, bolder terrorist acts, we have got to have some presence there,” Ryan said of needing a military presence in Afghanistan.

Gabbard disputed his plan, saying that the Taliban "was there long before we came in and will be there long after we leave. We cannot keep U.S. troops deployed to Afghanistan thinking that we are going to somehow squash this Taliban.”

“I didn’t say squash them," Ryan pushed back. "When we weren’t in there they started flying planes into our buildings.”

“The Taliban didn’t attack us on 9/11. Al Qaeda did,” Gabbard said before they talked over one another.

Gabbard emerged as the top-searched candidate despite having the third-lowest amount of speaking time, clocking in at just over 6 minutes for the nearly two-hour event.

Booker had the most speaking time at 10 minutes and 35 seconds, followed by O'Rourke with 10 minutes and 15 seconds. Warren clocked in at just over 9 minutes.

The second night of the Democratic debate is slated for Thursday. It will feature Biden and other top-tier candidates Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersCuba spells trouble for Bass's VP hopes Trump Spanish-language ad equates progressives, socialists Biden's tax plan may not add up MORE (I-Vt.), South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete ButtigiegPete ButtigiegFormer Indiana Gov. Joe Kernan dies How Republicans can embrace environmentalism and win In politics, as in baseball, it ain't over till it's over MORE (D) and Sen. Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisCuba spells trouble for Bass's VP hopes Biden should pick the best person for the job — not the best woman Trump adviser Jason Miller: Biden running mate pick 'his political living will' MORE (D-Calif.), along with six other hopefuls.