Fiorina, Trump and the ‘hot guy:’ Top social media moments from the #CNNDebate

Story highlights

Carly Fiorina, Donald Trump dominated social media chatter at the CNN Republican Debate

A young man sitting behind Jake Tapper unexpectedly became a social media sensation

CNN  — 

A presidential debate in 2015 is only half the battle. The reaction on social media can also tell the tale of who did great and who flopped the debate.

CNN’s Republican presidential debate on Wednesday night was no different.

Here are six of the biggest social media moments:

Carly Fiorina takes on Donald Trump’s remarks

Carly Fiorina once again showed herself willing and able to go toe to toe with the leading candidates, taking Donald Trump to task for earlier comments he made about her.

A Rolling Stone article quoted Trump as saying, “Look at that face! Would anyone vote for that?”

Fiorina confronted him about those remarks on the debate stage in Simi Valley, California.

It was the most tweeted moment from the debate.

Most awkward moments from the debate

Bush admits to smoking marijuana

It wasn’t exactly an “I didn’t inhale” moment, but still quite the admission from former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush. And he had an apology that his team tweeted right after.

Fact-checking the candidates

The many faces of “The Donald”

Donald Trump, per usual, said a lot during the debate, but the faces he made throughout told the tale.

Debate reactions captured in GIFs

Bush demands Trump apologize

Bush and Trump had several moments going head-to-head, most notably when the former governor wanted Trump to apologize for remarks he made about his wife, Columba Bush, in a deleted tweet: “#JebBush has to like the Mexican Illegals because of his wife.”

Trump wasn’t about to apologize, and Columba responded.

5 memorable moments from the debate

Carly Fiorina’s Planned Parenthood moment

The audience erupted in applause after Carly Fiorina made mention of the recent hidden camera videos targeting Planned Parenthood.

This moment ranked 2nd on Facebook for the night.

#CNNDebate: Post-game buzz

Bush vs. Trump on the most recent Bush president

Trump laid into former president George W. Bush, and the younger Bush defended his brother’s record.

Debate winners and losers

Something that didn’t take place on the debate stage

"Hot guy" Gregory Caruso

A few people on social media were distracted from the actual debate, wondering who the young man was sitting behind Jake Tapper.

Even Buzzfeed got into the act, posting a story about him.

Well, CNN got in touch with him and his name is Greg Caruso of Los Angeles, an aspiring filmmaker who is not on Facebook or Twitter (and sorry, he declined to disclose his relationship status).

He first found out about the attention he was getting via texts from his friends and finds the whole thing to be funny.

“It’s pretty hilarious,” he said. “Social media can focus on some guy at the debate instead of the debate.”

6 takeaways from the debate

As for the debate itself, the 24 year old is a fan of Ronald Reagan and the younger President Bush, but is not ready to decide which candidate he likes best (not necessarily Jeb Bush, either).

“I think out of everyone, (Bush) improved the most from the first debate,” he said.

“Carly Fiorina did a great job and was in her element. That was the highlight of the debate to watch her. She held her own.”

02:42 - Source: CNN
What's trending from the #GOPDebate?

CNN’s Justin Lear, Marina Cracchiolo and Elizabeth Johnson contributed to this report.