Audience numbers for the Republican National Convention are drastically trailing those enjoyed by the Democrats just last week.
According to the Nielsen ratings, 14.2 million people viewed the second day (technically the first) of the GOP convention -- a full 4.3 million less than watched the Democrats last Tuesday. The majority of viewers were 55 years or older, while more women (11.2 million) than men (9.5 million) tuned in to watch President Bush, former Sen. Fred Thompson and Sen. Joseph Lieberman give their speeches.
Certainly there are logical explanations for the disparate numbers. Hillary Clinton spoke on the second night in Denver, creating inherent drama. And because the GOP was forced to push back day one of their convention, they may have, in the end, lost some viewers. (Democrats had higher numbers on their second day than on the first).
But there is also, clearly, an enthusiasm gap at play. And voters, including Republicans, simply aren't as interested. The second day of the GOP convention in 2004, for instance, had 600,000 more viewers than last night.