I’ve been enjoying this week’s coverage of the Democratic National Convention on CNN (the only network anchoring coverage from the floor). Whether you agree with Democrats or not, you must admit that they’re putting on a great show and the stars of the party have woven some fantastic speeches together.
Therefore, I’m very excited to be headed to Minneapolis St. Paul on Sunday to attend the full week of the Republican National Convention.
I’m intending to blog the convention top-to-bottom and to bring you guys the behind-the-camera perspective of the greatest political stage show on Earth (a label that could apply to the RNC or DNC though Obama’s address in Mile-High Stadium to about 80,000 might raise the bar well above terra firma (or at least mare supra)for the GOP. Wi-fi has been intermittant to non-existant at the Pepsi Center according to some reports, so hopefully the RNC will have it humming along through the convention.
If any other folks (observers or reporters) are heading down to the RNC from Canada or if you’re a delegate/blogger from the US, I’d love to hear from you. I’ll be available via Blackberry during the convention and even if you aren’t able to make it, I’d be happy to share my thoughts about the goings-on and nomination of John McCain as the Republican nominee for President of the US.
I have a bit of an embarrassing confession to make. I subscribe to an unhealthy amount of polling information via email and RSS. Polling companies in Canada and the US send me daily information on a number of topics, whether it’s the horse-race of McCain-Obama, the demographic breakdowns of perceptions on the US economy, or Canadian attitudes towards arctic development (and those are just from today)
I’ve been watching the Democratic National Convention with some interest over the past couple of days. If you’ve been following my twitter feed, you might have seen some of my live reactions to speeches by Michelle Obama, Mike Schweitzer or Hillary Clinton. The data from day 2 has just hit my inbox and newsreader and the numbers provide a look at the success/failure of the stage-managed political super-rally in Denver, Colorado.
In a comparison of keynotes of Michelle Obama vs. Hillary Clinton (though Clinton’s wasn’t technically a keynote), Nielson polling data shows that the NY Senator beat Mrs. Obama with 26 million viewers vs. 22.3 million. Further, in ratings, African-Americans are watching the DNC in larger proportions than white viewers. Black viewers were 1.4 times as likely to be watching the DNC than the population as a whole. This year at the DNC, African-Americans make up a record of 24% of all delegates. US Census records from 2000 show a 12.9% African-American population in the US. Though the Democrats reserve delegate spots for racial minorities and women, the television ratings suggest unprecedented high political engagement and interest among African-American electors. Higher voter turnouts reflect healthy democracies and it is exciting to watch the American contest unfold this year.
Comparing the second days of the 2004 and 2008 DNC conventions, the 2008 convention had five times the television viewers. This is particularly important for Hillary Clinton as she’ll likely be running for President in 2012 if Obama fails to get enough votes in November. She still remains quite popular among Democrats with an 80% approval rating.