While overall ratings have been a mixed bag for both major political parties during this month’s Republican and Democratic national conventions, the GOP can point to one area of apparent success in their effort to reach voters with a unified message.
As reported by the Daily Wire, President Donald Trump and this week’s Republican National Convention have so far outperformed the Democratic National Convention in terms of viewership on C-SPAN’s livestreams.
In fact, the result represented a blowout: roughly six times as many viewers turned in for the Republican convention on Monday’s opening night than for the first night of the Democratic convention exactly one week earlier, according to reports.
Sagging ratings across the board
According to data first cited by The Hill, C-SPAN registered approximately 440,000 views for the GOP event compared to about 76,000 for the Democratic convention.
C-SPAN is a unique metric for such data since it provides commercial-free coverage of the conventions without the frequent interjections by pundits as seen on cable news networks.
When it comes to traditional television audiences, however, both parties saw a dramatic drop in viewership compared to their respective 2016 conventions.
According to the Nielsen ratings, about 17 million viewers tuned in to the GOP convention across the 11 broadcast and cable networks that provided at least partial coverage of the event during primetime hours.
A tale of two conventions
Four years ago, an estimated 23 million watched the opening night of the GOP convention on television.
In comparison, the Democrats’ convention attracted more TV viewers, with about 18.7 million watching on opening night, as reported by the New York Post. Across the board, both conventions saw about a 28% drop in viewership on the first night compared to 2016 ratings.
With President Donald Trump slated to be a recurring featured speaker and more convention programming scheduled for this week’s Republican convention, it remains to be seen which party will win the ratings battle when all the numbers are in.
As for the Dems, Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden registered 21.8 million television viewers on Thursday when he delivered his acceptance speech.
Although conventions can be an important benchmark by which to register voter engagement, this election year is anything but traditional. The only statistic that truly matters is which candidate voters believe is best suited to lead this country over the next four years.