CQ Politics: R's lead in social media "poll"
Wed September 29, 2010 9:02 am

CQ Politics is reporting today that Republicans have a huge edge over Democrats in followers on the social media, Facebook and Twitter:

Republican candidates for the Senate in the November midterm elections have on average four times as many Facebook fans and five times as many Twitter followers as their Democratic opponents, according to a recent analysis.

HeadCount, a nonpartisan organization that works with musicians to promote voter registration and turnout, tallied fans of each social media profile tied to the candidates' campaigns.

"The difference was as dramatic as we ever could have imagined," said Andy Bernstein, the group's executive director.

Republican Senatorial candidates for the 37 seats in play this year have 1.43 million fans on Facebook pages linked to their campaigns, while Democrats have less than 300,000. On Twitter, Republican Senatorial candidates have close to 520,000 followers and Democrats have less than 90,000, according to the report.

That's an average of more than 38,700 fans for each Republican candidate and more than 8,200 for each Democrat on Facebook. On Twitter, each Republican averages about 14,000 followers to each Democrat's roughly 2,500.

"Obviously what you're talking about there is a base, a motivated base, which is what every candidate wants to have," Bernstein said. "What I think we're seeing is just the enthusiasm gap, that social media is a barometer of people's passion. A considerably higher number of people are enthusiastic and are just feeling personally connected to these candidates."

The totals are skewed by Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), who leads all candidates with more than 680,000 fans. Coming in second and third are Florida GOP candidate Marco Rubio, who has more than 122,000 fans, and Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.), with more than 95,000 fans.

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