Perhaps this will explain the alt-right fiction that Trump won the debate (http://www.businessinsider.com/fox-news-donald-trump-debate-polls-2016-9).
Trump did, in fact, come out ahead in a slew of online polls on various websites. But those polls were all unscientific, meaning the sample of participants did not accurately reflect the sample of viewers who watched the debate. The Drudge Report, a popular conservative news source, also linked to each online poll, heavily skewing the results. Such polls are almost always discounted by professional pollsters and analysts. The only scientific survey conducted in the immediate aftermath was the CNN/ORC instant poll, which showed viewers thought Hillary Clinton handily defeated Trump.
But that important distinction did not stop a handful of Fox News hosts from promoting the results of the online polls.
Sean Hannity led the charge in the hours after the debate, repeatedly citing online polls as supposed proof Trump won the debate.
"I have it in front of me. Time magazine, Drudge Report, CNBC, The Hill, CBS — the only one that has Hillary winning is CNN, and they are the 'Clinton News Network,'" Hannity told millions of viewers.
Not only did CBS not conduct a poll, but Hannity strongly implied that the unscientific online polls were more accurate than the CNN/ORC poll, a patently false claim. "They surveyed — these other ones have hundreds of thousands if not millions" of participants, Hannity said of the polls.
A tweet from CBS is instructive:
On @foxandfriends @realDonaldTrump said he won a @CBSNews post-debate poll. We did not conduct a post-debate poll.