Trump’s speech did not help the Republican convention’s TV ratings, as viewership remained flat and Biden’s speech drew millions more viewers.
Overnight ratings for the fourth and final night of the conventions.
Six networks combined (FNC/CNN/MSNBC/ABC/CBS/NBC). Ratings are for the duration of each nominee’s speech only:
Democratic / Biden – 17.5
Republican / Trump – 14.1
— Michael Mulvihill (@mulvihill79) August 28, 2020
A ratings point equals 1.19 million viewers, so the difference in audience size between Trump and Biden is well over 3 million viewers.
According to TVLine, Trump’s broadcast ratings were smaller than night two of the Republican convention:
ABC, CBS and NBC’s combined coverage of RNC Night 4 — which featured Rudy Giuliani, Ivanka Trump and then a 70-minute speech by President Donald Trump himself — delivered 5.43 million total viewers (through 11 pm), which is down a tick from Night 3 (5.65 mil) and more on par with Night 2’s broadcast total (5.45 mil).
Compared to broadcast-TV’s fast nationals for Night 4 of the Democratic National Convention (5.8 mil), the RNC’s own finale was off by six percent.
The ratings for Trump’s convention were flat and did not beat the Biden convention on a single night. Trump’s had 32.2 million viewers for his acceptance speech in 2016. That number appears to have been nearly cut in half in 2020.
The message is clear. America has tuned out Donald Trump, and frankly, there was no reason to watch his lifeless acceptance speech that wavered between trying to paint Joe Biden as a trojan horse for socialists and a laundry list of exaggerated Trump accomplishments, and lifeless presentation that we have seen hundreds of times before from Trump.
Trump isn’t a ratings draw. He lost each night of the convention, which could be a sign of what’s to come on election night in November.
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Mr. Easley is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association