In 2008, the Republican National Convention was a ratings success. Sarah Palin brought in 37 million viewers for her speech, with the following night and Senator John McCain’s acceptance speech pulling in almost 39 million viewers. All hopes for this year was another ratings success, that the GOP base would be as motivated as they were in 2008, to defeat Barack Obama.
Those hopes found themselves dashed when the Paul Ryan speech failed to surpass 20 million viewers, a loss of 17 million viewers. But, all was not lost, then they grew to 30 million the next night. Still down compared to 2008, but not quite as badly having only lost 9 million viewers.
But this shows an enthusiasm gap for the Republican party which bodes poorly coming into the fall election. If the upcoming Democratic convention even matches the numbers, much less surpasses them, it’s not looking good for the GOP.
One of the more concerning elements of the ratings lost is which channels topped the ratings. Being the Republican National Convention, one would expect Fox News to be on top. Instead, we find CBS, a network with a long established “liberal bias” in both its coverage and its audience. NBC, with its liberal hosts, was also near the top spot. Compared to four years ago, where Fox and the more corporate ABC were on top, this indicates that more of the viewing audience was there watching the competition then were there to cheer on the “home team.” The viewing numbers for both CBS and NBC are comparable to the 2008 numbers, which means that the enthusiasm has been lost almost entirely on the right-wing.
Some have considered that social media might be the cause for this drain, but that is poppycock on its face. The ratings numbers already include streaming media, long added to the ratings. Most people do not wait for clips to appear on social media, even if they are only observing through the internet. They stream it to their systems, and use social media for commentary from there. If anything, social media should have created a larger audience, not a smaller, due to more proactive access.
This is a bad sign for the Republican Party. If the Democratic Party suffers a similar ratings loss, it would indicate a general malaise in the voting population. If, however, there is only a minor loss, or even worse, a growth, it means that the Republicans are in serious trouble.
Serious trouble indeed.
Sign up to have all the AddictingInfo you can handle delivered directly to your email here!
- Final night of Tampa convention pulls fewer TV viewers than in 2008
- Ratings: GOP Convention Way Down; CBS Wins Night
- The GOP convention’s so-so TV ratings: 4 theories