Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Dem Debate much more-watched than GOP Debate; Drudge owns self

It's official, folks: the American people are far more interested in Democrats right now than in Republicans. It's not just that Republican Party identification at an abysmally low 30.8%; it's not only that Americans trust Democrats more than Republicans on every major issue; it goes beyond the fact that Dems have a huge generic ballot lead as well as strong likely voter stats. We now learn from just-released numbers that well over 800,000 more people watched the Democratic debate on CNN than watched its GOP counterpart.

The numbers from the Democratic debate are over at Media Bistro:

Debates: Dems Get 2.78 Million Viewers On CNN; Most-Watched Debate Yet
CNN's Democratic debate averaged 2,783,000 million total viewers on Sunday night -- "more than any other presidential debate of this election season," the network notes.

Now, while it is true that the Fox News GOP debate garnered 2.55 million viewers, it is also true that Fox News' ratings as a whole are higher than any other news network (though their numbers are in decline), which makes the comparison somewhat akin to the proverbial apples and oranges.

According to Drudge, on the other hand, last night's GOP debate received a scant 1,974,000--a comparative deficit of 809,000 viewers.

In a piece of comic relief, however, Matt Drudge attempts to put his best lipstick on this pig by not comparing the two debate's numbers side by side (though he had reported the Dem debate numbers only two days earlier), but rather breathlessly comparing CNN's debate numbers with those of O'Reilly's on Fox:

O'REILLY BEATS CNN REPUBLICAN DEBATE... O’Reilly at 8pm on FONEWS CHANNEL averaged 2,291,000 viewers -- more viewers than CNN’s entire debate from 7-9pm which had 1,974,000... MORE... At 9pm, Fred Thompson’s appearance on FNC HANNITY/COLMES out-rated CNN/Anderson Cooper’s analysis of the Republican debate --- FNC averaged 1,628,000 viewers to CNN’s 1,178,000 from 9-10pm...

While it is commonplace for Drudge to make a big deal out of every time Fox beats out CNN for viewership in a desperate attempt to continue to pretend that America has a silent majority of conservatives in spite of every poll to the contrary, this particular bit of propaganda is extremely amusing. First, it doesn't speak well of the Republican base's intellectual curiosity or of the GOP candidates themselves that more Republicans would prefer to watch Bill O'Reilly blather on about the topic of the day with commercials and all, than watch their own candidates in an uninterrupted two-hour debate. Second, it should surprise absolutely no one that Fred Thompson's H&C appearance should garner more viewers than Anderson Cooper's post-debate analysis: Fred Thompson is another candidate getting free airtime! I myself switched over to watch Fred--not out of any great love for Republicans or Fox News, but because it was actually new information on the 11th perjurer-pardoning, torture-loving wingnut for president.

The irony of Drudge's pushing these numbers wasn't lost on some Freepers, either:

To: rednesss
Goes to show that O’Reilly’s fans are not conservatives...

Most conservatives would choose to watch a GOP debate over O’Reilly tooting his own horn.

In fact, most conservatives would rather watch paint dry than O’Reilly tooting his horn.

10 posted on 06/06/2007 3:27:48 PM PDT by pissant

Hannity gave Fred close to half an hour. Way more exposure than he would have gotten on a stage with 10 stiffs in a row. At least we got to see how he responds and he sure did not duck questions or answers.

7 posted on 06/06/2007 3:26:02 PM PDT by lexington minuteman 1775

At this point, the Matt Drudges of the world can't spin the bad news fast enough to even make Freepers take the bait. And the bad news for them is this: It's not just that America doesn't like Republicans; America isn't really even interested in Republicans.

It's a good day to be a Democrat right now--and just think how much better it would be had it not been for the Capitulation bill. The debate numbers and desperate spin attempts of the rightwing media hacks are yet another addition to a mounting pile of evidence leading to one conclusion: Democrats have nothing to lose by acting like Democrats. It's what the people want. It's what the people are looking for. It's what the country needs. And as long as we stick by our principles, I don't see the Republicans' being able to do anything to stop us.

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