Post-election, conservative talk shows have taken a hit as their viewership realized they had been completely misinformed about where the election was going. Although they assured their viewers that the election was very close, the statistics indicated otherwise and were confirmed the morning of November 7. Hannity and O’Reilly were both hit hard, but Hannity took a much worse ratings drop, losing more than half of the “money group” — those ages 25-54. O’Reilly kept around 70%.
NY Daily News reports on the ratings of various political shows post-election:
And when the dust settled, it turns out Hannity’s viewers opted to vote again — with their remotes.
Adding insult to injury, two of Hannity’s rivals on MSNBC, Ed Schultz and Rachel Maddow, held onto huge chunks of their audiences, while at CNN, far less politically polarizing host Anderson Cooper lost almost none of his viewers postelection.
It got even worse for Hannity in the “money demo” of viewers 25-54, who are prized by advertisers.
And through the early part of December, Maddow actually beat Hannity in the coveted group — a shocking turn, because until the election, Hannity was unassailable by any of his rivals, at least in terms of ratings.
While this is excellent news for those opposed to conservative media (you can count me among them), we mustn’t allow ourselves to get complacent. This election season was a victory for liberals — a decent one. We won seats in both the Senate and House as well as earning reelection for a Democratic president. However, we’ve won victories before — and thought it was the beginning of the end for social conservatives and the Republican Party. We’ve also been very, very wrong, and seen hard-won victories go to nothing.
We can’t let that happen. If we get complacent, we could be facing massive losses in 2014 and 2016. It doesn’t take too much, either. If the economy does poorly and blame can be placed on the left, or if we enter another war. I don’t think either of those things are likely to happen, but you never know.
One of the most important things we can do is ensure peace. During the Nixon/Johnson election season, with Lyndon Johnson as the sitting president, Nixon opened a line of negotiation with South Vietnam (during the Vietnam War, and separate from the governments. This is illegal; it violates the Logan Act) to make sure that peace talks failed until after the election. The reasoning behind this treasonous behavior? “If there’s war, people will vote for me to end it,” he told his aides. “If there’s peace, they’ll vote their pocketbooks — Democratic prosperity.” (The Presidents Club)
The Democratic Party does better with the economy. Long term, the next four years likely won’t matter very much with regard to the economy — I could be wrong, but the economy rises and falls over time and unless we have a horrific depression or insane levels of prosperity, it isn’t likely to be remembered for economic considerations. What will matter is how we handle social issues and human rights.
We can’t afford to lose the ideological battles surrounding human rights. It is our duty to ourselves and our country to make sure our children and their children have equality in a country that has historically been a champion for human rights.