If TV ratings were votes, Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden wouldn’t be happy.
The good news for Biden from early estimates by Nielsen Media Research was that 21.8 million people watched his acceptance speech on TV Thursday night, according to The Hill, which reported that Biden drew more viewers than any other speaker during the virtual Democratic National Convention.
But Biden’s numbers are 21 percent lower than the ratings rolled up by presidential nominee Hillary Clinton when she made her DNC acceptance speech in 2016.
The convention had been struggling all week to attract a TV audience.
Assuming this is a Monday-to-Monday comparison, it’s pretty stark. The bigger Q is what will ratings be for Biden’s speech Thursday compared with past acceptance speeches. https://t.co/mb40un66ly
— Jeff Greenfield (@greenfield64) August 18, 2020
The Biden audience number, which might change when more networks are added, comes out to be over 38 percent lower than the 34.9 million viewers President Donald Trump attracted in 2016 when he accepted the Republican nomination.
Biden acceptance speech generates 38% less audience than Trump in 2016 | Just The News https://t.co/tZehxODhry
— John Solomon (@jsolomonReports) August 21, 2020
Trump will have his chance to top his numbers next week when the Republican National Convention is held at the White House.
The convention already produced one surge.
Trump’s approval rating on the daily Rasmussen Reports survey was at 51 percent on Friday. The number was 47 percent on the first day of the Democratic convention Monday. The margin of error in the poll, which factors in likely voters, is plus or minus 2.5 percentage points.
Fact Check: True pic.twitter.com/5kQ5HAe9if
— Rasmussen Reports (@Rasmussen_Poll) August 20, 2020
The Trump campaign was ready with an explanation of the DNC, with Boris Epshteyn, a strategic adviser to the campaign, calling it a “socialist snoozefest.”
“The first night was boring, the second night was a bunch of losers like John Kerry, last night was retreads like Hillary Clinton … and tonight was supposed to be the big night. … Is this the worst major party convention in our lifetimes?” he said Thursday, according to Fox News.
Republican Rep. Elise Stefanik of New York said Biden’s speech had something missing.
“What we did not hear from Joe Biden was standing up for our law enforcement,” Stefanik said of the speech. “We did not hear from Joe Biden how he’s going to grow our economy, and we deserve these answers.”
In commenting on Biden’s speech, Michael Goodwin wrote on Fox News that Biden cleared an “incredibly low bar.”
“As for the actual content of the speech, it was more pedestrian than soaring, and the ideas were presented in simple, stark contrasts. Light vs dark, hope vs fear, almost always in short sentences,” Goodwin wrote in an op-ed.
With the speech behind him, “The bar is raised and he should be treated as any other candidate,” Goodwin wrote. “He can start by releasing his health and medical reports, which he has so far refused to do. Most importantly, there is no excuse for him to hide any longer in his basement. Hidin’ Biden must be a thing of history.”
“Joe Biden has broken the protective shell, and he can’t now wrap himself in it again. Ever.”
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