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Wayin: GOP Debate Generates Almost A Million Tweets

Social media intelligence company Wayin says the GOP main event debate on CNN generated nearly a million tweets in it three-hour window Wednesday night, including some "nuclear" spikes in social media activity.

Positive social media mentions actually declined for the three most buzz-generating candidates, according to the company

Wayin, which monitored the Twittersphere during the debate, said the moments and issues that tallied the biggest upticks in message volume were:

7:26 p.m. Would you trust Donald Trump with the nuclear codes?

8:02 p.m. Planned parenthood

8:08 p.m. Iran nuclear deal

9:02 p.m. Foreign policy

Generating the most buzz on Twitter were Donald Trump, Carly Fiorina and Jeb Bush.

Wayin analyzed social media sentiment around those three candidates before and after the debate and all three showed drops in "positive" sentiments, with Fiorina registering the biggest decline, from 63% to 56%. That is in contrast to her 24% positive sentiment uptick after the first debate.

Bush's positive sentiment dropped from 34% to 30% and Trump's from 48% to 46%.

The term showing up most often in Fiorina-related tweets was "Planned Parenthood." That may have been helped by her graphic and disturbing description of what one of the sting videotapes of Planned Parenthood depicted. The top terms for Trump were "respecting" and "faces."  Trump said he respected women, something of an upgrade from the love and cherish terms he had used before in defending his comments about Fiorina's face, though he later called her a beautiful woman, too.

The top term for Bush was "marijuana." Bush admitted he had smoked pot 40 years ago, suggested others on the dais might have as well and just didn't want to admit it in front of a TV audience of millions (over 20 million as it turned out). He also apologized to his mother for the public admission, then tweeted the same message, "Sorry, Mom," which Wayin said got 24,000 retweets.

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.