Presidential Debate Ratings Are Up over 2008. No, Really.

Maybe us cynical political sourpusses need to find a new narrative, too. More people watched last night’s debate than watched Barack Obama and John McCain duke it out over our last most important election in the history of America. Via MediaBistro:

More than 58 million people watched the first Presidential debate last night between President Obama and Mitt Romney, up substantially from the first debate in the 2008 election cycle, which had 52.4 million viewers.

Fox News was the most-watched cable news network during the debate, and will likely be the most-watched network on TV, though final broadcast numbers will not be released until after 4 PM.

That’s interesting information, given that the ratings for both the Republican and the Democratic National Conventions were down compared to 2008. I may have to revisit my belief that this is entirely a "get out the vote" election.

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  • Fist of Etiquette||

    No one wanted to see McCain do anything.

  • Bill||

    So many unemployed they had nothing better to do?

  • ||

    Bad news for Obama, since he stunk up the joint. Although it would be helpful to know what percentage of that 58 was not slavering partisans.

  • Enough About Palin||

    Zero?

  • ||

    about 125 million people voted in 2008.

    58 million viewers just saw Obama got his ass kicked.

    If as many as 90% of them are slavering partisans then the debate would have still mattered.

    Watch the polls and you will get your answer.

  • Bee Tagger||

    "Maybe us cynical political sourpusses need to find a new narrative, too."

    You think so low of the US that you refuse to capitalize her nickname?

  • CE||

    That's the "united States" to us patriots.

  • R C Dean||

    I may have to revisit my belief that this is entirely a "get out the vote" election.

    Or not. Why couldn't ratings be up because the partisans really really wanted to see their guy kick the other guy's ass all over the stage?

  • Paul.||

    This is how I see it. I think that the people that are interested in the election are hungering for any crumbs they can get. They've got two empty suits running, and people on both sides want to see something.

    I'm not voting for either of them so, I went out for Sushi and then played Assassin's Creed last night.

  • ||

    I really dug Constantinople. That was some awesomely designed shit.

  • ||

    I think they watched because the media has been playing it as this big "Romney's last chance" moment. They're hyping the drama of it.

  • ||

    Yes, RC, I agree. If the idiotic "who do you think will win" poll is even remotely correct, it suggests to me that Obamatrons wanted to watch a confirmation of how great their messiah is. They really needed it because he's buttfucked them on all his promises and it's getting really hard for them to delude themselves that he's who they fantasize he is. They needed him to dominate Romney, to speak well, to champion all their causes, and to sound hopey and changey. And he didn't, he sounded like a dope and got his clock cleaned.

    Now, the question is: what do they do about the next debate? I think it will have high ratings as TEAM RED tunes in to see their guy win again, lots of undecideds tune in to see if Romney's surprisingly good performance is duplicated, and TEAM BLUE, as their last hope, tune in to see Obama come out swinging and prove himself to be who they thought he was.

    And if he gets slaughtered again...they don't tune in to the next debate. Or any others. Which will be hilarious.

  • johnl||

    The next Romney-Obama debate is a "town hall" format. I suspect the format change will help BHO.

  • db||

    Well, to be fair, there are a lot more people sitting at home in front of the TV instead of working this time around.

  • Rich||

    Now *that's* a "zinger".

  • Paul.||

    Nice. Nothing but net.

  • ||

    If you ever want to put down a pinko, ask him why all the Tea Party rallies take place on the weekends, and then watch him whisper HERP when you say, "Because they, you know, work for a living."

  • PapayaSF||

    LOL

  • Paul.||

    Oh shit, was there a debate last night? Who's running?

  • PapayaSF||

    Kang and Kodos. Or Turd Sandwich and Giant Douche. I forget now.

  • CE||

    Back then it was Hopey and Changey Obama vs. Grandpa Nukem McCain. It was an easy call, so why watch?

    Now it's Doom and Gloom Obama vs. Robot Romney -- hard to tell who is worse.

    No wonder ratings are up.

  • PapayaSF||

    I loved the remark i saw around here earlier: "The Romneybot has passed the Turing Test."

  • ||

    Exactly. No one wants either of these assholes to win, but they believe they must choose between them. They're watching the debates to determine which asshole stinks the least.

  • ||

    The media have been playing the horse race for all it is worse.

    Of course people watched the debate. It was a tense and dramatic moment as the underdog challenger faced his last chance to remain in contention. Next up, will the underdog continue to gain, or will he snatch defest from the jaws of victory?

    Come on, they WANT this to be a horse race, they want Romney to, if not win, at least pose a serious challenge. Otherwise it's boring, and people stop watching. They aren't in this for charity!

  • sloopyinca||

    I've fucking seen this movie before. They both end up bloodied, but Apollo Creed wins by decision, Rocky calls out for Adrienne and Pauley gets drunk.

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