Friday, August 31, 2012
TV Ratings For The GOP Convention - Or, Decisions Have Consequences
One of the stories about the Republican convention that's under the wire is the significant drop in its TV audience.
Part of that might have been because more people (like yours truly) watched it via live streaming, or because of the alphabet network's insipid and reduced coverage.
But part of it might have been due to a much more obvious reason.
The resurrection of the GOP in 2010 was largely engineered by two people - Sarah Palin and Senator Jim DeMint. And they did it without much help, if any, from the GOP establishment. That's particularly true in Governor Palin's case. The money she raised through Sarah PAC, the endorsements she made and the speeches she made as she toured the country energized the GOP base and got them out to the polls.In the end, her batting average on her endorsements getting elected to office was over .750, an incredible number in baseball or in politics.
Her reward for her efforts was to be excised as a speaker from this year's GOP convention.
On day two of the convention, Paul Ryan's excellent speech was seen by 20 million people. In 2008, when Sarah Palin made her acceptance speech, she drew a whopping 37 million.
Love her or hate her, Governor Palin delivers outstanding speeches and has a huge and devoted following..which is exactly why Roger Ailes snapped her up for FOX.
Want to bet that if Governor Palin had spoken to the convention in Tampa, the ratings would have been off the charts? That it would have energized and revved up the entire convention?
The GOP establishment was likely afraid that Governor Palin would overshadow some of the politicos scheduled to speak, and that her speaking at the convention might have been too 'controversial.'
That decision was not only cowardly and ungrateful, but it was strategically a mistake. Paul Ryan's speech needed and deserved to be heard by a larger audience, and Sarah Palin would have delivered that.