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The DNC Is Dominating the RNC in TV Ratings

To the tune of almost 3 million viewers

Lindsay MacDonald

Politics these days may tend to feel like a bad reality TV show, but if it is, it's one we're all totally hate-watching. Ratings are in for the opening night of the Republican National Convention, and it appears that in this race at least, the Democrats are coming out on top.

Early numbers from Nielsen indicate that the first night of the Republican National Convention drew 15.8 million viewers across six networks, which is significantly less than the 18.7 million viewers who tuned in to the Democratic National Convention on its first night. According to Nielsen, Fox News carried the bulk of the RNC viewership, with 7.1 million total viewers. 

After an address from President Donald Trump earlier in the day, opening night of the Republican National Convention speakers such as Donald Trump, Jr., former ambassador Nikki Haley, Sen. Tim Scott, Kimberly Guilfoyle, and more explaining why Americans should vote for Donald Trump in November. Comparatively, night one of the Democratic National Convention featured Michelle Obama, Bernie Sanders, and many of the former 2020 democratic candidates, who all implored voters to vote for Vice President Joe Biden.

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Though both conventions numbers are impressive compared to normal primetime ratings, it's also worth noting that they both drew fewer viewers than four years ago. The Republican National Convention experienced a ratings dip of 29 percent from the 2016 convention, and The Democratic National Convention saw a similar dip of 27 percent. These numbers do not reflect digital streaming, which has become an increasingly popular way to watch the conventions.

Night two of the Republican National Convention also fell short of the Democratic National Convention's night two ratings, but by a smaller gap. 

Joe Biden and Donald Trump

Joe Biden and Donald Trump

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