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Obama: Ratings We Can Believe In

State of the Union speech draws 48 million, outrating most of Bush’s efforts

President Obama’s still got some ratings mojo.

Wednesday’s State of the Union address was seen by an average audience of 48 million viewers, making it one of the most-watch SOTU speeches of the past decade, according to Nielsen.

While Obama did speak to Congress last year a month after taking office, it wasn’t technically a SOTU speech. For the record, that address drew about 52 million viewers.

Don’t be shocked if Drudge chooses to focus on that decline rather than, you know, the facts. 

Obama’s first official SOTU was the most-watched since George W. Bush’s 2003 speech, which brought in 62 million viewers and came at the height of Iran war fever. Bush’s 2002 SOTU debut also outrated Obama, with nearly 52 million tuning in for the first post-9/11 SOTU.

Most of Bush’s SOTU addresses, however, attracted around 40 million viewers. And Bill Clinton’s SOTU bow brought in just 45.8 million viewers back in 1994.

Eleven networks broadcast the Obama speech Wednesday.