As 2020 Democrats debated one another in Detroit this week, Trump claimed viewers were "desperate" for him and slammed the event for “very low ratings” on Twitter – turns out, compared to the 2016 GOP primary debates, he may be right.
During the first main-tier GOP event aired on Fox News in August 2015, an average of 23.9 million people tuned in – an all-time debate viewership record. That’s according to Nielsen Media Research.
The second round main-tier GOP primary debate, aired on CNN in September 2015, attracted 22.8 million viewers.
Trump participated in both of those debates.
That compares with an average of 14.5 and 17.2 million viewers during the first two 2020 Democratic debates aired on NBC and MSNBC in June – and 8.2 million and 10.1 million during the CNN events this week.
It is worth noting that during the 2016-cycle with the GOP, the debates were often split by “undercard” – for low-polling candidates – and “prime-time” for the more popular ones. So far this year, candidates have received their debate nights based on a lottery.
Trump deemed the first round of Democratic debates “boring.”
During the second, he said viewers were “desperate for Trump.”
Trump will hold a rally in Cincinnati on Thursday night.