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World News

Trump convention speech attracts smaller TV audience than Biden

FILE PHOTO: U.S. President Donald Trump delivers his acceptance speech as the 2020 Republican presidential nominee during the final event of the Republican National Convention on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, U.S., August 27, 2020. REUTERS/Carlos Barria/File Photo

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Some 23.8 million Americans watched President Donald Trump’s keynote speech on the final night of the Republican National Convention, slightly less than the TV audience for his Democratic rival Joe Biden last week, Nielsen ratings data showed on Friday.

The audience reflects viewers across 13 networks between 11 p.m. ET and 11:45 p.m. ET Thursday, when Trump accepted his party’s nomination in a speech delivered on the South Lawn of the White House. The figures do not include online viewers.

Former Vice President Biden’s nomination acceptance speech at the Democratic National Convention last week was watched on television by 24.6 million Americans, according to Nielsen data.

The viewership numbers for Trump’s speech were down some 25% on the bumper 32.2 million people who watched his address in 2016 when he accepted the Republican nomination for president. The decline partly reflects an overall drop in TV viewership in recent years, and the fact that both political conventions this year were held largely in a virtual format because of the coronavirus pandemic.

The Democratic event, however, was more widely watched than that of the Republicans on every night except the second convention night on Tuesday, when first lady Melania Trump and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo were the headline speakers.

Reporting by Jill Serjeant; Editing by Jonathan Oatis and Leslie Adler

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