Democrat Joe Biden is the victor in the convention speech ratings war, edging out President Donald Trump’s Thursday night appearance by an average of 800,000 viewers, according to Nielsen numbers.
The early number had shown a wider difference of two million early Friday afternoon, but the finalized number narrowed the gap slightly to 800,000.
The New York Times reported that Nielsen put Trump on 23.8 million to Biden’s 24.6 million for the Democratic National Convention speech the Thursday before.
The number is calculated for nine cable and broadcast networks. It does not include those who watch online.
Trump had tried to pre-empt the bad news.
‘Great Ratings & Reviews Last Night. Thank you!’ he tweeted Friday morning, a little before 10 a.m.
Overall, the virtual DNC beat out the mostly virtual RNC in ratings over the four nights.
Biden’s communications team relished the news.
Spokesman TJ Ducklo tagged another Biden spokesman, Andrew Bates, to ask him a question Friday afternoon.
‘I always forget, does @RealDonaldTrump care about his television ratings? Or is that not something he cares about?’ Ducklo asked Bates via Twitter. ‘Like, do you think it’ll trigger him that Joe Biden’s speech got way bigger ratings than his did?’
Later Ducklo added, ‘Turns out Americans aren’t really into the dark and dystopian view of the country that Donald Trump is presiding over as president,’ linking to another tweet showcasing the ratings.
Trump briefly engaged with reporters Friday afternoon in the White House, but didn’t take questions.
He brought the press pool into the Oval Office to announce that he was pardoning Alice Johnson, a criminal justice reform advocate who was aided by Kim Kardashian, and spoke during Thursday night’s RNC, before Trump.
By the time Trump issued Johnson’s surprise pardon, the ratings had come out.
Besides both candidates ending their conventions with fireworks, the two political rivals stylistically gave very different speeches.
Biden’s was in a darkened room, with only a handful of reporters watching quietly, as he stared into a camera and delivered a 25-minute address in his adopted hometown of Wilmington, Delaware.
Trump’s, on the other hand, was before an audience of 1,500 supporters – who weren’t following proper social distancing protocols to slow the spread of COVID-19.
The president went on for 70 minutes and dropped Biden’s name 41 times.
While Biden lambasted Trump’s time in office, he never mentioned his name once.