On Friday, Maine Gov. Paul LePage broke into the nation’s top 50 Google search terms after his comments about drug dealers impregnating “a young white girl” garnered national attention and criticism.

The original story about the incident appeared on PressHerald.com shortly after 5 p.m. on Thursday. Almost immediately, other news outlets began publishing additional accounts of the incident. By 11 p.m., Google News recorded over 500 new articles that mentioned the terms “Maine” and “Paul LePage”:
A chart from Google Trends shows the relative search activity for Maine Governor Paul LePage on January 8 and 9, after his comments about drug dealers impregnating “a young white girl” garnered national attention and criticism.

Early Friday morning, hundreds of additional news stories on the subject went live on the Internet, according to Google’s data. The national volume of related searches peaked around 8 a.m. but remained quite high after the governor held a 10 a.m. press conference in which he denied any racism and blamed reporters for his administration’s lack of progress in controlling Maine’s heroin crisis.

Google’s data also indicated that the phrase “Paul LePage racist” was among the top search queries related to the governor’s name.

At a meeting in Bridgton on Wednesday, LePage also characterized heroin dealers as “guys with the name D-Money, Smoothie, Shifty – these types of guys – they come from Connecticut and New York, they come up here, they sell their heroin, they go back home.”

According to Google, the name “D-Money” has become another leading search term associated with the governor’s name. Here are the search trends for the name ‘D-Money’ during the past 24 hours – note the similarity in shape to the chart above.

A Google Trends chart from Friday, January 8, 2016 shows the spike in search traffic for the name "D-Money" after Gov. Paul LePage mentioned the name in comments about drug dealers impregnating "young white girls" and garnered national attention and criticism for his remarks.

A Google Trends chart from Friday, January 8, 2016 shows the spike in search traffic for the name “D-Money” after Gov. Paul LePage mentioned the name in comments about drug dealers impregnating “young white girls” and garnered national attention and criticism for his remarks. Google Trends