Mitt Romney’s Republican National Convention (RNC) speech is officially the worst attempt at rallying the troops since 1996. It was in that year that Gallup began polling the results of convention acceptance speeches.
Romney’s speech was considered “good” or “excellent” by just 38 percent of those surveyed. In comparison, John McCain received a good or excellent rating of 47 percent in 2008. McCain at the time had the lowest rating previously recorded.
Polling for Romney only gets worse from there as 10 percent called his speech “terrible.” In 2008 only 5 percent said the same thing about John McCain’s RNC acceptance speech.
There is a good chance that Mitt Romney’s less than stellar speech contributed to horrid bounce numbers following the convention. After the RNC, Mitt Romney received only a 2 point jump in polling support, the lowest since Gallup started tracking the results of political conventions in 1984.
Gallup is quick to point out that political convention polling is typically a poor indicator of election results. When asked if they watched the RNC on TV, only 51 percent of people said they watched a “great deal” or “some” of the event. The last time viewer interaction dropped that low was in 1996 when Bob Dole gave his RNC acceptance speech.
In the meantime, the RNC did manage to draw some viral attention; unfortunately it almost completely surrounded not Mitt Romney but instead Clint Eastwood. The Eastwood internet meme focuses on the aging actors attempt to address an empty chair which he referred to as President Obama.
With the Democratic National Convention moving into full swing, it will be interesting to see if Americans tune in. Should the DNC also fail to provide high viewer engagement, it could be a good indicator of Americans disillusionment with the current political system.