Perversely, Could The GOP Loss Be Good For Conservative Talk Radio And The Conservative Blogosphere?
In his latest column, Brian Maloney writes:
“Even before the final returns had come in last night, it was clear that Republicans had been handed a defeat in the House of Representatives and if they do manage to hang on to the Senate, it will be by a thread, at best. Clearly ticked off at the party’s leadership and President Bush, voters were in a testy mood and took it out at the ballot box.
So while it’s a lousy day to be a Republican Party insider, it actually brings great news for conservative talk radio. In fact, this shot in the arm couldn’t have come at a better time. Now, it’s up to the medium’s programmers to capitalize on the new environment. Are you ready?
…Now, a combination of all of the elements that led to talk radio’s last big surge are back in place: the familiar bogeymen in power, now represented by Democrats Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid, a worried, highly motivated conservative base looking to recapture in 2008 what has been lost in 2006 and even a wide open presidential contest, with no clear favorite on either side. For big audience gains, it’s a perfect storm.
As Republicans are instantly snapped out of their previous complacency, this is a recipe for unprecedented ratings success. Now in majority leadership positions, Democrats will be making decisions that conservative talkers are directly able to criticize.
For Rush Limbaugh and others, it’s a new lease on life. No longer is it a matter of merely attacking what Democrats might do if in power, it’s instead a bona fide reality, which is very likely to motivate conservatives to listen more often. Now, there will be an endless supply of fodder.”
This is not the first time I have heard that theory, although the last time someone offered it up, it was being applied to the leftie bloggers.
A while back, I was talking with a Republican operative who closely follows the blogosphere and I mentioned that I was always a little puzzled as to why the liberal blogosphere as a whole was significantly bigger than the conservative blogosphere, especially since, in my opinion, some of the biggest websites on the left really aren’t very good.
For instance, setting ideology aside, the fare on the main page of Daily Kos is usually very dull. And although Eschaton has perked up a bit, for a while, the left-wing version of Instapundit, Atrios, was just going through the motions and posting lots of open threads and lame links.
Still, you can’t argue with their success. Both of those blogs have proven that they can draw and hold a big audience and the left side of the blogosphere as a whole has been more successful than the right.
The Republican operative said that in his opinion, it all came down to losing and anger. The Democrats were out of power, they were deeply unhappy about it, and they wanted to commiserate with other like-minded souls. So, they sought out these liberal blogs.
If that theory is correct, and I tend to think that it is, then it means that the right side of the blogosphere is going to experience a boom because of Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid and Company coming into power.
It’s too bad that theory is going to be tested under these lousy circumstances, with the GOP getting pounded into the ground, but over the next year or two, we’re going to get to see if there’s any merit to this theory.