Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Web Stats: Bush Tanks There, Too

Days Until Bush Leaves Office = 356

Following President Bush's last State of the Union address last night, the overwhelming bulk of post-speech commentary in the media (old and new) has been to the effect that everyone - Congress, the press, the vast majority of the American public - has already put this administration in the rear-view mirror and is focused on the question of who will be the next occupant of the oval office.

To be sure, I agree with this assessment, but I've also been curious to see if there would be any way to substantiate it. And so, being, y'know, me, I went hunting today for some numbers to back up or refute the conventional wisdom. And sure enough, the answer, like so many things these days, is to be found on Google.

I decided to punch in a trend search comparing search volumes for President Bush, Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, John Edwards, and just to provide a baseline for comparison, ultimate political botnet hit-bait Ron Paul. The search compared Google volumes over the past 30 days. The result: Bush comes in dead last. Dead last. Granted, the numbers available today run only through January 26, when Obama stormed to a landslide victory in the South Carolina, and so does not include data for the immediate aftermath of the State of the Union, traditionally an annual high-water mark of Presidential media coverage. But still. President Bush comes in last.

The picture below tells the story. The trend line legend is:
blue = Barack Obama
red = Hillary Clinton
goldenrod = John Edwards
violet = Ron Paul
green = George W. Bush

So, yes, based on these trends, the American people have clearly stopped paying attention to this president in favor of the next president, whomever that turns out to be.

I'll run another trend line in a few days time to track any changes between last Saturday and the last night's State of the Union. Watch this space!

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