Of course you’ve seen it, the split screen meme comparing the crowds at Obama’s inauguration with Trump’s.
While the meme is typically stupid and being spread by either the weak-minded or, I suspect, those who allow themselves to be weak-minded long enough to hit the post button because it feels good, it does bring up an interesting point.
Which is: what is the point?
Seriously. Obama was popular. No denying that. Entered office with an 86 percent approval rating. Huge crowds everywhere he went. Huge crowds at his inauguration, not only because he was the first black President and his inauguration was historic, but because he created a cult of personality around himself. Obama was bigger than the office. Thrills ran up people’s legs when he spoke. He was the vessel into which many poured their dreams. He was the candidate of a vaguely defined “hope and change” which allowed people to see him as a savior, which he wasn’t and no President could ever be.
So, more people turned out at his inauguration. Does that mean anything? Democrats revere Bill Clinton as a demigod, rape accusations and all, yet more people attended Trump’s inaugural than Clinton’s in 1997. George W. Bush ran the country for eight years, but Trump’s attendance numbers dwarfed his. They dwarfed Reagan’s as well, so are we to believe that Reagan was less of a President than Obama, simply because fewer people showed up for his swearing-in?
This is a meaningless metric by which to judge America’s support of a leader. The real metric is who won the election and I think we all know that answer. Despite the resistance of some to accept it.
Now suppose we really want to play this numbers game. Suppose we want to wade into the illogical waters and ask, “how a protest march held on a weekend shockingly attracted more people than an Inauguration held on a work day means anything at all?” Suppose we decide that, yes, the numbers game is important.
Then why are we limiting ourselves only to the people who were there in person? Is it not logical to count everyone who took time out of their day to watch Trump take the oath of office?
It is logical, and the results are something the left isn’t going to like.
According to Entertainment Weekly, the TV ratings for Trump’s inaugural were the second highest since Ronald Reagan was sworn into office in 1981. Only Obama 2009 beat Trump. The score looks like this:
At #1, Ronald Reagan 1981: 41 million watching.
#2, Barack Obama 2009: 38 million watching.
#3, Donald Trump 2017: 30 million watching.
Uh-oh, Obama’s number is still bigger.
Or is it?
As Entertainment Weekly admits, those TV numbers don’t include streaming. CNN alone reported almost 17 million people streaming the inauguration. Millions more on FOX and MSNBC. It’s not 1981 anymore, it’s not 2009 anymore. I was with Trump supporters on the 20th. We worked hard all morning, but work stopped when the man took his oath and gave his speech while people watched on their phones.
Add in the streaming numbers and viewership for Trump’s likely inaugural pushes 50 million. More than Obama 2009, more than Reagan 1981. More, in fact, than any President in history.
Modern technology has made traveling to the Inauguration or being in front of a TV almost obsolete. Yet even with these modern conveniences, Trump still had an incredible “in person” turn out, 3rd highest TV viewership AND millions more streaming it live.
So, what do you say, meme-spreaders and liberal media talking heads? Still want to play this stupid numbers game?