My colleague Brad Slagger reported on the millions of people who tuned in on Fox News earlier, but now new numbers have come out that blow even those away.
Many leftists were giddy over the fact that President Donald Trump’s Tulsa rally didn’t have the attendance that it once did before the coronavirus swept across the globe, but what they didn’t anticipate was how many people were watching from home.
Looking at pictures during the rally, you can see that nearly the entirety of the top row was vacant. As it turns out this was partially due to the fact that a Tik Tok “no-show protest” was underway. CNN’s Brian Stelter cheered Tik Tok users for reserving seats at the Tulsa event and then not showing up, effectively cutting off anyone who would actually go.
It certainly served to generate disappointing optics, but as Forbes has now reported, the crowd who was watching at home is mindblowing:
President Trump’s weekend rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma was nowhere near the packed-to-the-rafters event the president had promised, but cable news viewers tuned in to watch in large numbers, with a total audience on Saturday evening of 11.77 million viewers across the three major cable news networks.
Fox News Channel had the largest overall audience by far, with 7.661 million viewers between 8 p.m. and 10 p.m. ET, followed by CNN with just 2.2 million and MSNBC with 1.9 million.
Nearly 12 million people watched Trump’s first return to form, somewhat smothering the idea that few people actually care about him anymore.
It’s unclear if this level of viewership will hold, but Stelter wondered allowed (somewhat pointedly) if this trend of reserving seats at Trump rallies to block actual attendees would be a pattern that continues. How Trump’s team plans to counter this is still unknown, but it’s likely that something will be done.
This may not be an all-around fix, however. Many people are still wary of contracting COVID-19 and may stay away out of safety reasons, which may also explain why his packed stadium appearances weren’t so packed this time around.
Time will tell, but one thing is still undeniable. Trump attracted thousands to see him in person and millions to view him on television. You can dress that up however you want, but the facts remain that he’s still a popular president with a fan base ready to brave viruses and protesters to see him.