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Wag the Blog: Does Drudge Matter?



Internet newsman Matt Drudge

No Fix post in recent memory has provoked the sort of reaction -- some of it good, but mostly bad -- generated by the two pieces we did on the influence of Matt Drudge (and his eponymous Drudge Report).

The first -- entitled "How Matt Drudge Rules the (Political) World" -- detailed Drudge's influence over the campaign narrative during the Democratic primary season; the second -- "Drudgeology 101" -- sought to explain why Drudge's coverage, which at one time has been so favorable to Barack Obama, had begun to turn against the Illinois senator.

In the former post, we led with this idea: "There's little debate that Matt Drudge and his eponymous website sit at the junction of politics and journalism in the modern media age."

But, over the last few weeks, some members of the political chattering class have begun to question whether Matt Drudge is as powerful as he once was.

To wit:

• On Monday, Drudge posted a link to this You Tube clip featuring an Obama radio interview from 2001 with a headline that blared: "2001 OBAMA: TRAGEDY THAT 'REDISTRIBUTION OF WEALTH' NOT PURSUED BY SUPREME COURT."

• Early on Tuesday, Drudge used a comic book picture of Obama over a headline that read: "ABCCBSNBCNYTLATWSJCNNMSNBCAPREUTERSAFPPOLITICOFTTIMEWASHPOSTNEWSWEEK: CAN THEY ALL BE WRONG?" It linked to this column on media bias by technology writer Michael Malone.

• Later in the day, Drudge led his site for hours with a picture of a smiling Obama giving the "thumbs up" over a banner headline reading: "OBAMA SAYS 'DAY OFF' WORK FOR ELECTION."

• Then on Wednesday, Drudge featured an image of one of Gallup's likely voter models that showed Obama at 49 percent and McCain at 47 percent with the headline: "TRICK OR TREAT: GALLUP SAYS OBAMA +2."

It's clear from this series of posts that Drudge believes the media is missing a John McCain comeback, and he is bound and determined to push the idea that Obama is far from a sure thing.

Mark Halperin, a veteran Drudgeologist and the editor of the indispensable Page at Time.com, recently took note of the content shift by Drudge arguing: "Follows recent pattern of posting things that seem not to help Obama -- including Biden's Orlando TV interview, the closer sets of polling data and more."

At issue is whether Drudge who, inarguably did more to frame Massachusetts Sen. John Kerry as an out-of-touch elitist than any other major player in the 2004 election (Don't believe us? Go read "The Way To Win"), has lost some of his ability to influence the message of the campaign.

Phil Singer, former deputy communications director for Hillary Rodham Clinton's presidential bid, believes he has.

In a post headlined "Is Drudge Losing His Mojo," Singer cites the same examples we have above and concludes:

"Lately it seems that the 'Roger Ailes of the Internet' isn't packing the kind of heat that made him famous. I'm not on the trail but it seems like reporters aren't chasing every item on Drudge as hard as they once did."

For today's Wag the Blog question, we want to know whether you agree or disagree with Singer's contention. Is Drudge less able to influence the daily dialogue of the campaign than he was even a few months ago? Or is he still the most potent news driver going? Why?

The most thoughtful/insightful comments will be featured in a Fix post of their own later this week. To qualify, all thoughts must be made in the comments section below not emailed directly to The Fix.

Go to it!

By Chris Cillizza  |  October 30, 2008; 11:00 AM ET
Categories:  Eye on 2008 , Wag The Blog  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Parsing the (Tracking) Poll: October Surprise
Next: Florida, Florida, Florida! (In Honor of Tim Russert)

Comments

OVER 62+ MILLION PEOPLE VOTED FOR BARACK OBAMA...52.6%

HANNITY DO NOT HAVE A CHANCE WITH ALL THESE PEOPLE! KEEP HANNITY IN CHECK!

ATTACK HANNITY... IF HE GETS OUT OF LINE..DON'T MAKE HIM A HERO...IF HANNITY PROMOTING HATE?..THAT IS NO HERO, AMERICA!

MR. OBAMA President of the U.S. needs our help still. We need to keep our eye on the in house enemy! Quote.."HANNITY'S AMERICA"

Mr. Sean Hannity feels the need to continue to (DIVIDE AMERICA) with his rant and raves about quote "associations"
our goal here should be to keep his rhetoric straight talk!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zgn6rjGbp0c

IN THIS PIECE ABOVE MR. SEAN HANNITY RIGHTOUSLY BEING "ASSOCIATED WITH TERROR!"

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/3036677/vp/26877217

ABOVE ARE JUST PLAN COMEDY FOLKS! THE BEST POLITICAL COMEDY IN DECADES.

Note: type in links learn and if need be. Protest Hannity's hatred rhetoric! email sean hannity also foxnews...pass this message on please!

Posted by: opp88 | November 6, 2008 6:49 PM | Report abuse

I'm a lefty and have enjoyed perusing Drudge's offerings for a number of years. He's been entertaining and has shown a keen eye for posting links of interest.

But lately he has simply exposed himself as having a truly marginal perspective. So, I think he has lost it. I rarely go there, and intend to keep it that way. He can all of the Fox News-Hannity-Limbaugh crowd all he wants going forward, but I think he has lost a bunch of the rest of us.

He's pushed the low stories in this election season indicating that he is a real jerk.

Posted by: rightsaid | November 1, 2008 7:42 AM | Report abuse

Well, thecannula sure gets around. Wonder what Nov 5 will bring. Hopefully some facts.

Posted by: taid | November 1, 2008 5:17 AM | Report abuse

Don't know if other commentators saw this item on the Financial Times yesterday, http://blogs.ft.com/gapperblog/2008/10/shock-drudge-loses-his-grip/.

It points out that Drudge's readership is about 1/2 that of Huffington Post lately, among other insights.

On a related point, I was presently surprised to see the Windows Mobile application to link to Washington Post blogs on my PDA this morning. They are actually easier to follow on this application than on the regular website. However, it also reminded me that some are dull, and that this partly arises from the need to present a "balanced" point of view in the Post. FT blogger John Gapper may have a point when he recommends that the US press evolve into something more nakedly partisan. That's certainly where the blogs have generally gone. It evokes the old days of Hearst and Pulitzer.

Posted by: parnest | October 31, 2008 1:17 PM | Report abuse

Seth Colter Walls
Huffington Post
10-28-08

"...Of course, there's seemingly nothing objectionable with McCain's organization helping a Palestinian group conduct research in the West Bank or Gaza. But it does suggest that McCain could have some of his own explaining to do as he tries to make hay out of Khalidi's ties to Obama."

NO, BUT THERE IS A LOT THAT IS OBJECTIONABLE ABOUT OBAMA SITTING THROUGH TRIBUTE TO KHALIDI, IN WHICH ISRAEL WAS CALLED A TERRORIST STATE AND WAS COMPARED TO BIN LADIN, WITHOUT GETTING UP AND LEAVING!

Posted by: thecannula | October 31, 2008 11:01 AM | Report abuse

Seth Colter Walls
Huffington Post
10-28-08

"...Of course, there's seemingly nothing objectionable with McCain's organization helping a Palestinian group conduct research in the West Bank or Gaza. But it does suggest that McCain could have some of his own explaining to do as he tries to make hay out of Khalidi's ties to Obama."

NO, BUT THERE IS A LOT THAT IS OBJECTIONABLE ABOUT OBAMA SITTING THROUGH TRIBUTE TO KHALIDI, IN WHICH ISRAEL WAS CALLED A TERRORIST STATE AND WAS COMPARED TO BIN LADIN, WITHOUT GETTING UP AND LEAVING!

Posted by: thecannula | October 31, 2008 10:58 AM | Report abuse

Funny to see a discussion titled Does Drudge Matter when he obviously does considering that you wouldn't ask the question if he didn't. I'm sure the Obamedia would like everyone to ignore Drudge since he puts the stories out there about Obama that they refuse to report because it might interfere with Obama's annointment to the presidency.

Posted by: RobT1 | October 31, 2008 8:35 AM | Report abuse

Funny to see a discussion titled Does Drudge Matter when he obviously does considering that you wouldn't ask the question if he didn't. I'm sure the Obamedia would like everyone to ignore Drudge since he puts the stories out there about Obama that they refuse to report because it might interfere with Obama's annointment to the presidency.

Posted by: RobT1 | October 31, 2008 8:34 AM | Report abuse

Drudge is a Republican and when their stock falls, so does his.

Plus, people remember that the last time they listened to his garbage, they got George W Bush.

Posted by: Bud0 | October 30, 2008 11:17 AM | Report abuse
*******
I agree with Bud0 on this completely.
Drudge was a red-meat vendor for the Republicans and a reliable source of minute-by-minute news for lazy or obtuse reporters. There are WAY too many sources for this kind of news now, without Drudge's far-right slant.
My prediction? He'll be less and less important in the coming years, and grow more shrill and tout more crazy stories to prop up his sagging popularity.

Posted by: dbitt | October 31, 2008 8:32 AM | Report abuse

wasn't around when this dude came into power. but back in the days, there was just one powerful news aggregator online for reporters who wanted to fulfill their insatiable needs for hourly news: Drudge. Now, the question no longer is where can i get my news, because if anything, there's just way too much info dissemination out there. and you've got really powerful alternatives (collectively) to drudge. Huffpost. TMP. JedReport. and so many others. They don't specialize in blogs, or commentary like the rest of the blogosphere. They specialize in up to the hour news. And i think another factor, no less, is the fact that we've been at this for 2 years. So we've got a new generation of newscasters and pundits (or more varied, if you will). They're not particularly impressed with getting online and looking for info. When they check out Drudge, if they do, they also look at huffpost, tmp, bensmith, jmart and polling aggretating sites like fivethirtyeight.com, realclearpolitics, pollster.com. So they are pretty likely to scoff at drudge trying to say it's a 2-point race when they can readily look at the latest nate silver polling post and see that out of the 6 national posts that came out, obama is up 12 points. and the gallup likely voters model II has obama up 7 points but only the likely voters model I has him up 2 points. So. there you have it. When reporters don't wanna go out there look for evidence, they don't just go to drudge. they go to other places. and that's the beauty of the leveling of the playing field by the internet.

Posted by: lupercal | October 31, 2008 1:58 AM | Report abuse

The typical Obama voter has a gold grill for teeth, his hat on sideways, his pants halfway down his ass, and an ACORN flyer in his pocket. How much can Drudge be expected to do to enlighten this cat?

Posted by: uberrich | October 30, 2008 11:58 PM | Report abuse

The typical Obama voter has his hat on sideways, his pants halfway down his a$$, and an ACORN flyer in his pocket. All the Drudges in the world couldn't persuade this cat that Obama's and empty suit.

Posted by: uberrich | October 30, 2008 11:56 PM | Report abuse

who is mad Drudge? Never read anything substantial by this author.

Posted by: Opa2 | October 30, 2008 11:09 PM | Report abuse

Drudge has lost his luster. The bloom is off the Republican rose. Beyond the fact that Bush has so thoroughly trashed their brand, many of the righties in government that used to be Matt's best sources have all retired, resigned, been convicted or are about to lose their congressional cafeteria privileges......

Posted by: leeroyski | October 30, 2008 11:02 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: officermancuso | October 30, 2008 10:20 PM | Report abuse

What's the big deal? He's a moron. I went to his site once, it was like The Enquirer Online or something. Yawn.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | October 30, 2008 9:54 PM | Report abuse

Drudge is totally pathetic and more obviously biased than Fox.

Drudge is actually worse than biased- he fails to tell the truth. I think he should go work for McCain.

Posted by: dougm2 | October 30, 2008 9:46 PM | Report abuse

Drudge is no longer credible. He's been unmasked as a tool of the Republican National Committee. I make it a point not to click on his site these days.

Posted by: officermancuso | October 30, 2008 9:39 PM | Report abuse

Drudge is still the premier blogger in the blogospher. Drudge gets more individual hits and providing more information than the big three combined on TV. Case in point Drudge's recent posting about the decline of ratings for the big three in an election year. Chris you may have a point that the talking heads are talking less about what Drudge is saying, however, the people outside of the TV box are reading what Drudge posts at clip that Couric et al can only dream about. In fact, the talking heads probaly ignore Drudge at their own peril, allowing unfiltered information to the masses may cause the media to decline even further.

Posted by: oscar97 | October 30, 2008 9:23 PM | Report abuse

Things change. The kids no one listened to 8 years ago are now firmly entrenched in the workforce. Time moves on and 8 years is enough time to make a blustery awkward political adolescent into a respectable mid-level employee considering the people in the 18-24 voting range in 2000 are now 26-32 and are no longer entry level employees (or entry level voters). Not to mention the youth who no one particularly listened to in the 1990's are now kind of old and until recently were still feeling ignored politically...

On the other hand, former GOP babes, like Ann Coulter, are now almost 47. Time moves on and if you want to be a star (over substance) you're old news just as quickly... I'm sure the same thing happened with Matt Drudge. Buzz only lasts so long.

Posted by: persimonix1 | October 30, 2008 9:08 PM | Report abuse

Drudge has been a public figure for awhile, he's predictable. When iconoclasts are predictable they are no longer powerful, as people who were once interested get bored and go looking for the next shiny thing. Blah Blah boring!!!

Posted by: persimonix1 | October 30, 2008 8:46 PM | Report abuse

Chris

It is a few of us v. 300 paid Obama staff bloggers funded by questionable credit card "receipts"


Is that fair?

Besides the Obama people here have long ceased to have a dialogue - instead they harass other posters instead of staying with the issues.

AND if you are reading this, they have created a screen name on here very close to mine to minimic and harass.


That is not dialogue either.

Posted by: 37thandOSt | October 30, 2008 8:11 PM | Report abuse

37andO, do you read?????? See post below.

Also, hope at some point we will hear from popasmoke's wife about O's Wednesday Message of Hope, one of the most popular TV events of all time. His wife was actually there at the O event. Incredible.
_________

"37thand0,

Please try to post your thoughts ONE time rather than multiple postings of the same information.

Happy to have your voice in the conversation but we want to keep it as much of a dialogue as we can.

Thanks,
Chris

Posted by: Chris_Cillizza | October 30, 2008 11:27 AM"

Posted by: broadwayjoe | October 30, 2008 8:02 PM | Report abuse

First, good news: even Drudge admits today Mac is "not even close," linking to the NYT/CBS poll putting O up 11! Zogby and Gallup both have O up 7. The new Pew poll hasn't come out yet (its old +15 number just fell out of the polls averaged by RCP). The new Pew should be out soon to bring the RCP # back up.

Drudge is relevant. Like it or not, he, Faux News, and hate radio force-feed various manufactured issues, e.g., the going away party for the Palestinian college professor, into the MSM.

However Drudge's Waterloo may have been pushing the horrible Ashley Tood racial hoax as true. He made sure that it made it into the MSM and clearly planned to stir that pot up through election day. We would have been hearing about "savages" carving backward Bs in faces, 24/7. Had the Pgh. police not exposed the hoax within hours, this Mac campaign stunt would have mushroomed into an ugly racial incident in Western Pa.

Early on, Drudge added value: he was regularly providing news that the MSM had spiked or refused to print or air, see Lewinsky. Now he's more just another link in Faux News/hate radio/NY Post extremist sewer pipe. His day has he almost passed, almost. But he still has the ability to push the MSM to air junk. At least he has stopped, for now, his irritating cherry-picking and misrepresentation of polls to support his Mac-is-coming-back theme (which no one bought into).

Again, today's NYT/CBS poll: O up 11 with just a few days to go.

Posted by: broadwayjoe | October 30, 2008 7:51 PM | Report abuse

Wrong question. Drudge's "relevance" was primarily a measure of how many reporters used his site for an easy read on current trends in lieu of doing their own research, and who boosted his buzz by passing along his content.

Bush's relentless failures may finally be swinging the unthinking majority away from fascination with the loud and boisterous right wing fear-and-smear act, and Drudge's star will fade in direct proportion. Some other spicy gossip site will arise to serve the lazy press, and Matt will be only a memory.

Posted by: info53 | October 30, 2008 7:41 PM | Report abuse

Wrong question. Drudge's "relevance" was primarily a measure of how many reporters used his site for an easy read on current trends in lieu of doing their own research, and who boosted his buzz by passing along his content.

Bush's relentless failures may finally be swinging the unthinking majority away from fascination with the loud and boisterous right wing fear-and-smear act, and Drudge's star will fade in direct proportion. Some other spicy gossip site will arise to serve the lazy press, and Matt will be only a memory.

Posted by: info53 | October 30, 2008 7:40 PM | Report abuse

I check it like once a week or so. Last time I checked, the story he was pushing was Kerry's Depends joke. It got out there, but it wasn't a big deal.

Today it is about some Al Qaeda video praying for the humiliation of Bush and his party. I guess they are worried about an Obama presidency.

Posted by: DDAWD | October 30, 2008 7:05 PM | Report abuse

I was not tuned in to the blogosphere in the 2004 election, although I had heard of Drudge. When I first started getting into blogs and online news/commentary, I noticed that many (most?) bloggers had Drudge on their blogrolls. I started going there with NO knowledge of whether it leaned in one direction of the other. Frankly, the design of the site is horrendous, and THAT is what drove me away.

I also like to read opinion, whether it be David Frum, Josh Marshall, Daniel Larison or Andrew Sullivan, and all Drudge seems to do is link to articles.

So, apparently I missed his heyday. I pay no attention to him now. It's because his site is cheap and boring, not because of his politics.

Posted by: renegademom3 | October 30, 2008 6:52 PM | Report abuse

.


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Voted One of the Top 5 Political Blogs for the Election of 2008

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Bookmark It Now !!! 37th & O Street

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http://www.myspace.com/37thandostreet


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Voted One of the Top 5 Political Blogs for the Election of 2008

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Bookmark It Now !!! 37th & O Street

.

.

http://www.myspace.com/37thandostreet


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Posted by: 37thandOSt | October 30, 2008 6:40 PM | Report abuse

.


.

Voted One of the Top 5 Political Blogs for the Election of 2008

.


.


Bookmark It Now !!! 37th & O Street

.

.

http://www.myspace.com/37thandostreet


.

.

.


.

Voted One of the Top 5 Political Blogs for the Election of 2008

.


.


Bookmark It Now !!! 37th & O Street

.

.

http://www.myspace.com/37thandostreet


.

.

Posted by: 37thandOSt | October 30, 2008 6:39 PM | Report abuse

"Greatest Argument for voting against Obama is this! America is a government meant to be one of checks and balances...."

Gee, nsabetus, why didn't you use this argument during the six years Bush and the Republicans ran everything?

As to Drudge, as well as Rush, Sean, Ann "Feminazi" Coulter and the other right-wing assassins, it finally appears that the people are seeing through the politics of smear and fear.

Look what has happened to that smart-ass Republican Congresswoman in Minnesota who said on national TV that Obama had "anti-American" views. Instead of being reelected easily, she's going down the tubes, and rightfully so.

And I'll bet that totally outrageous lie from Liddy Dole that her opponent, Kay Hagen, is "Godless," will come back to bite her in the butt as well.

Posted by: StevefromSacto | October 30, 2008 6:32 PM | Report abuse

Power comes from mass public support. As Drudge goes further to the right, he loses supporters. He holds no sway over those who now blow him off.

Posted by: jandcgall1 | October 30, 2008 5:51 PM | Report abuse

Drudge is definitely still relevant. I'm a rabid dem and I still read him if only to see what the other side is reading while avoiding Fox "News". And I have definitely still seen stories he's pushed explode on cable news. Ask anyone who's linked on Drudge if he still matters.

That said, it comes with two caveats. One, people recognize his bias. You have to take everything their with a grain of salt and people know that. I think he has been getting worse of late.

Two, he needs to be working with at least a grain of truth to be effective. Kerry actively campaigned against the Vietnam war and did throw his medals away. There is no real evidence of a McCain comeback. These close polls are of likely voters, when one of Obama's greatest strengths is to turnout new voters. The whole redistribution thing is a load of BS. Government is inherently redistributive, Obama's proposal's aren't that much more redistributive than anybody elses. Without even a kernel of truth to run on, Drudges influence falls short.

Posted by: aaxler | October 30, 2008 5:39 PM | Report abuse

Drudge is only slightly more relevant than Limbaugh. They are both wack jobs!

Posted by: bradcpa | October 30, 2008 4:47 PM | Report abuse

Drudge is only slightly more relevant than Limbaugh. They are both wack jobs!

Posted by: bradcpa | October 30, 2008 4:41 PM | Report abuse

Maverick Personality Disorder:

http://tinyurl.com/5ggtte

Posted by: caraprado1 | October 30, 2008 4:40 PM | Report abuse

Drudge is only slightly more relevant than Limbaugh.

Posted by: bradcpa | October 30, 2008 4:40 PM | Report abuse

I like this article, but I think the issue isn't the continued relevance of Drudge. What this article should have addressed is the broader decline of conservative media in general which juxtaposes with the theme of the dramatic decline of the conservative movement. Tracing back to the republican revolution of 1994, we saw a concerted effort to move the press to the right. One aspect of this effort was aggression towards the (leftist) establishment media -- especially as embodied by publicly financed institutions such as PBS. However, a more significant part of this strategy was to develop conservative voices in the media to offset the presumed liberal bias. Rush Limbaugh, Drudge, and Fox News were all born of this movement. They thrived under it for much of the 90s (stoked by anti-Clinton mania) and the early part of this decade with the emergence of Bush's agenda.
What I think "the Fixstah" missed in this post is that the story is not Drudge, it is the conservative media. Looking at recent Nielsen ratings, we see -- to Olbermann's continued delight-- that the conservative Fox is losing share to the increasingly liberal MSNBC (especially among the more critical TV demographics). As the country moves left, the conservative media will lose viewers who are increasingly misaligned with their views. I'm sure that the same movement is demonstrable for Drudge. I would encourage the Fix to pull Comscore stats (internet usage database) for Drudge and their liberal counterparts (Huff post, Slate etc.) in the last few months. What this data is sure to show is that Drudge is relatively in decline (absolute traffic has likely increased due to the election). As he slides further away from the interest of Americans, his viewership is subsiding. I think we should re-frame this post around this message: The fall of conservative ideology as evidenced by decreasing relevance of their media. This is the story we should be after. Drudge's decline is merely a sidebar to the larger narrative

Posted by: IronMan4 | October 30, 2008 4:38 PM | Report abuse

Maverick Personality Disorder:

http://tinyurl.com/5ggtte

Posted by: caraprado1 | October 30, 2008 4:37 PM | Report abuse

Drudge is only slightly more relevant than Limbaugh.

Posted by: bradcpa | October 30, 2008 4:36 PM | Report abuse

I like this article, but I think the issue isn't the continued relevance of Drudge. What this article should have addressed is the broader decline of conservative media in general which juxtaposes with the theme of the dramatic decline of the conservative movement. Tracing back to the republican revolution of 1994, we saw a concerted effort to move the press to the right. One aspect of this effort was aggression towards the (leftist) establishment media -- especially as embodied by publicly financed institutions such as PBS. However, a more significant part of this strategy was to develop conservative voices in the media to offset the presumed liberal bias. Rush Limbaugh, Drudge, and Fox News were all born of this movement. They thrived under it for much of the 90s (stoked by anti-Clinton mania) and the early part of this decade with the emergence of Bush's agenda.
What I think "the Fixstah" missed in this post is that the story is not Drudge, it is the conservative media. Looking at recent Nielsen ratings, we see -- to Olbermann's continued delight-- that the conservative Fox is losing share to the increasingly liberal MSNBC (especially among the more critical TV demographics). As the country moves left, the conservative media will lose viewers who are increasingly misaligned with their views. I'm sure that the same movement is demonstrable for Drudge. I would encourage the Fix to pull Comscore stats (internet usage database) for Drudge and their liberal counterparts (Huff post, Slate etc.) in the last few months. What this data is sure to show is that Drudge is relatively in decline (absolute traffic has likely increased due to the election). As he slides further away from the interest of Americans, his viewership is subsiding. I think we should re-frame this post around this message: The fall of conservative ideology as evidenced by decreasing relevance of their media. This is the story we should be after. Drudge's decline is merely a sidebar to the larger narrative

Posted by: IronMan4 | October 30, 2008 4:34 PM | Report abuse

I like this article, but I think the issue isn't the continued relevance of Drudge. What this article should have addressed is the broader decline of conservative media in general which juxtaposes with the theme of the dramatic decline of the conservative movement. Tracing back to the republican revolution of 1994, we saw a concerted effort to move the press to the right. One aspect of this effort was aggression towards the (leftist) establishment media -- especially as embodied by publicly financed institutions such as PBS. However, a more significant part of this strategy was to develop conservative voices in the media to offset the presumed liberal bias. Rush Limbaugh, Drudge, and Fox News were all born of this movement. They thrived under it for much of the 90s (stoked by anti-Clinton mania) and the early part of this decade with the emergence of Bush's agenda.
What I think "the Fixstah" missed in this post is that the story is not Drudge, it is the conservative media. Looking at recent Nielsen ratings, we see -- to Olbermann's continued delight-- that the conservative Fox is losing share to the increasingly liberal MSNBC (especially among the more critical TV demographics). As the country moves left, the conservative media will lose viewers who are increasingly misaligned with their views. I'm sure that the same movement is demonstrable for Drudge. I would encourage the Fix to pull Comscore stats (internet usage database) for Drudge and their liberal counterparts (Huff post, Slate etc.) in the last few months. What this data is sure to show is that Drudge is relatively in decline (absolute traffic has likely increased due to the election). As he slides further away from the interest of Americans, his viewership is subsiding. I think we should re-frame this post around this message: The fall of conservative ideology as evidenced by decreasing relevance of their media. This is the story we should be after. Drudge's decline is merely a sidebar to the larger narrative

Posted by: IronMan4 | October 30, 2008 4:30 PM | Report abuse

I like this article, but I think the issue isn't the continued relevance of Drudge. What this article should have addressed is the broader decline of conservative media in general which juxtaposes with the theme of the dramatic decline of the conservative movement. Tracing back to the republican revolution of 1994, we saw a concerted effort to move the press to the right. One aspect of this effort was aggression towards the (leftist) establishment media -- especially as embodied by publicly financed institutions such as PBS. However, a more significant part of this strategy was to develop conservative voices in the media to offset the presumed liberal bias. Rush Limbaugh, Drudge, and Fox News were all born of this movement. They thrived under it for much of the 90s (stoked by anti-Clinton mania) and the early part of this decade with the emergence of Bush's agenda.
What I think "the Fixstah" missed in this post is that the story is not Drudge, it is the conservative media. Looking at recent Nielsen ratings, we see -- to Olbermann's continued delight-- that the conservative Fox is losing share to the increasingly liberal MSNBC (especially among the more critical TV demographics). As the country moves left, the conservative media will lose viewers who are increasingly misaligned with their views. I'm sure that the same movement is demonstrable for Drudge. I would encourage the Fix to pull Comscore stats (internet usage database) for Drudge and their liberal counterparts (Huff post, Slate etc.) in the last few months. What this data is sure to show is that Drudge is relatively in decline (absolute traffic has likely increased due to the election). As he slides further away from the interest of Americans, his viewership is subsiding. I think we should re-frame this post around this message: The fall of conservative ideology as evidenced by decreasing relevance of their media. This is the story we should be after. Drudge's decline is merely a sidebar to the larger narrative

Posted by: IronMan4 | October 30, 2008 4:25 PM | Report abuse

Anyone who has ever visited Drudge's website realizes he has an ideological/partisan agenda which he is pushing. It's like tuning into Fox News. He should be ignored.

Posted by: OHIOCITIZEN | October 30, 2008 4:13 PM | Report abuse

You're asking the wrong question. It's not so much a matter of how much influence Druge has vis a vis Huffington or other "scandal" sheets. The real question is has the electorate finally gotten sick of the slime? If so is this election just a statistical outlier due to the collapsing economy or has the appetite of the voting public really turned? Look at the polls stating that negative campaigning and Palin (who let's face it is synonymous with character assassination) are the two main reasons voters give for turning away from McCain. (Yes Obama has gone negative too but his negative adds attack McCain's policies not MaCain and if you need further proof Obama doesn't get booed when he says on the stump that "McCain is a decent man with whom he disagrees").

So the question you should be asking is if sliming you opponent won't win you the election anymore what is the future of Drudge et. al?

Posted by: foxn | October 30, 2008 3:55 PM | Report abuse

I almost never read the Drudge Report. the half dozen times i have seen it, I thought it was pretty boring and awfully gossipy.

Posted by: Patrick16 | October 30, 2008 3:54 PM | Report abuse

You're asking the wrong question. It's not so much a matter of how much influence Druge has vis a vis Huffington or other "scandal" sheets. The real question is has the electorate finally gotten sick of the slime? If so is this election just a statistical outlier due to the collapsing economy or has the appetite of the voting public really turned? Look at the polls stating that negative campaigning and Palin (who let's face it is synonymous with character assassination) are the two main reasons voters give for turning away from McCain. (Yes Obama has gone negative too but his negative adds attack McCain's policies not MaCain and if you need further proof Obama doesn't get booed when he says on the stump that "McCain is a decent man with whom he disagrees").

So the question you should be asking is if sliming you opponent won't win you the election anymore what is the future of Drudge et. al?

Posted by: foxn | October 30, 2008 3:52 PM | Report abuse

Drudge's high-water mark was in the 1990s when he was pretty much the only thing going as far as politics on the web were concerned.

I'm sure that oppo-researchers will continue to peddle trash to Drudge, and the right-wing noise machine will continue to regurgitate whatever crap he puts up, but his numbers since July have pretty much been crashing.

I'm sure that some -- especially political reporters -- will continue to visit Drudge daily out of habit, but, much like Fox News and Limbaugh he's got some demographic problems -- his core audience isn't getting any younger and his partisan style of politics is too closely aligned with the toxic GOP brand.

Posted by: JPRS | October 30, 2008 3:42 PM | Report abuse

Drudge's high-water mark was in the 1990s when he was pretty much the only thing going as far as politics on the web were concerned.

I'm sure that oppo-researchers will continue to peddle trash to Drudge, and the right-wing noise machine will continue to regurgitate whatever crap he puts up, but his numbers since July have pretty much been crashing.

I'm sure that some -- especially political reporters -- will continue to visit Drudge daily out of habit, but, much like Fox News and Limbaugh he's got some demographic problems -- his core audience isn't getting any younger and his partisan style of politics is too closely aligned with the toxic GOP brand.

Posted by: JPRS | October 30, 2008 3:40 PM | Report abuse

wpost4112 writes
"Well, he's a crappy business man then. He has lost traffic to Huffington Post.
[snip]
It leapfrogged Drudge Report, which had 2.1 million unique visits, up 70% from a year ago. (Matt was far ahead of Arianna last year, with 1.2 million unique visits to 792,000, respectively.)"

The other way to look at it is that Drudge markedly increased the number of unique visits from last year. Maybe not as good a businessman as Arianna, or maybe his niche didn't have as much room for growth. But I wouldn't call him a crappy businessman -- 2.1 million hits is nothing to sneeze at. I'm just sayin' ...

Posted by: mnteng | October 30, 2008 3:21 PM | Report abuse

It's pathetic, but there are thousands of Americans stupid enough to take the Drudge "report" more seriously than the Colbert Report.

Here's a clue: if it tells you nothing but what you want to hear, it's not news, it's propaganda. You might as well get your political opinions from fictional characters.

Posted by: lonquest | October 30, 2008 3:04 PM | Report abuse

McCain has alot to be worried about because now even Huckabee Hearts Obama?
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YADwYU-phpI


See the latest Lies the GOP is trying to spread about Obama http://www.theobamaplan.com

Posted by: pastor123 | October 30, 2008 3:02 PM | Report abuse


Wag the Blog: Does Drudge Matter?


Not to me, because I don't just limit myself to one section of news. I continuously educate myself via all channels concerning this election. I have no limits when I seek the truth of any matter. I am not a closet, one will do person. I am worldwide as is my choice candidate, Obama. In conclusion, the sum of the parts equals to the whole in my case. So the Drudge can keep on trucking with their one sided and biased opinions. God Bless America!

Posted by: Nisey01 | October 30, 2008 3:01 PM | Report abuse

The Drudge Report is relevant but Drudge does not make his own posts anymore. In fact, he hasn't made his own posts all year. His protege, Andrew Breitbart, is running the site for him.

Posted by: jdeoudes | October 30, 2008 3:01 PM | Report abuse

The point I suspect many would make is that while Drudge has a good nose for a good story, he was explicitly a conduit to distribute GOP oppo material and that the political media enabled him endlessly to do s most(famously Kerry in 2004, as you noted). It is, naturally, NOT the role of the national political media to be an oppo aerator and this decline should have happened long ago.

Posted by: koios399 | October 30, 2008 2:52 PM | Report abuse

I don't understand why it's hard for journalists to understand that Drudge doesn't drive the news. Let me explain how its done. Drudge gets news through RNC or other republican sources or some online sources and post it. Now both FOX news and NY POST will try to drive the news which is picked up republicans(Mostly they are one who will be the source but acts like its news to them). So now you have FOX news, NY Post and Republicans will do everything to make a news out of it. The MSM has to talk about it because the whole republicans will only talk about it the WHOLE DAY. They wait and see how much mileage they are getting in MSM. If they think the story is getting lot of attention then they push the story for next few days. Its gives an illusion that Drudge started all that. NO, without the support from FOX, NYPOST and Republicans he is less relevant. The problem for democrats is they don't have anything like FOX and NYPOST.

Posted by: votenow | October 30, 2008 2:48 PM | Report abuse

I've just started looking at Drudge this year...and after checking them out in past month or two, decided it wasn't worth wasting time on relative to the couple of dozen or so newssites I DO want to read. Especially for the 'hype' I'd seen and heard occasionally about this or that from the Drudge Report.

Just wasn't even interesting from what I've seen.

Posted by: georgeqpublic | October 30, 2008 2:47 PM | Report abuse

I'm inclined to agree with other posters who posited that similarly-themed alternatives to the Drudge Report -- like the Huffington Post -- have probably contributed somewhat to a reduction in Matt Drudge's influence. The political viewpoints may be vastly different, but Drudge and Huffington feed the same hunger for scandal, and there are a lot of people who'll swallow it no matter what it tastes like.

That said, I think the larger problem for Drudge is that this is just a bad time to be a scandal-chucking sweetheart for the right wing; I believe Bill O'Reilly's ratings are down lately, too. The fiery conservatives who are normally the first to tune into Rush or Hannity or whoever and rage along with them are slipping into that "Ah, our guy's going to lose, what's the point?" funk. The appeal of those pundits is in their willingness to tell viewers/listeners whatever they want to hear, but with a Barack Obama presidency looking ever more likely, they can't tell viewers, "Oh, we're going to mop the floor with the liberals like we always do." That's what the audience wants to hear, but most of them realize it ain't gonna happen.

Now, I realize Drudge isn't the same as your average right-wing pundit, but the people who made his website as popular as it is are the same people who tune into those pundits' shows every day. And right now, that group is doing whatever it can to avoid thinking about the humbling that is coming Nov. 4.

Posted by: GJonahJameson | October 30, 2008 2:47 PM | Report abuse

He said it first and, in my opinion said it best:

--" Drudge is a Republican and when their stock falls, so does his.

Plus, people remember that the last time they listened to his garbage, they got George W Bush.

Posted by: Bud0 | October 30, 2008 11:17 AM | Report abuse "--

No one really believes all this radical 'Obama is a space alien' stuff - so why keep repeating it? The earth will keep spinning no matter who wins, and there will be a November 5th. Do all the 'Obama is a space alien' crowd think that everyone will forget what a nut-case they are?

I don't understand the blind loyalty some people show to their political party.

I do understand supporting a family as best you can, hence I understand that talk-shows and other money-making enterprises. But those who hold to one party regardless of the facts?

I can understand the Evangelical point of view, that need only know the religion of the candidate.

Maybe it provides a sense of continuity in their lives? "I'm a third generatation . . ." Democrat / Republican / Liberartion whatever. I was sometimes critical of father for not being a billionaire - that I might not have to work for a living. But maybe I should be happy that he was poltically ambiguous.

Posted by: DonJasper | October 30, 2008 2:35 PM | Report abuse

The question shouldn't be can Drudge still drive the news, it should be, why do journalists allow an often discredited rumor monger drive it in the first place?

Posted by: hfl2001 | October 30, 2008 2:20 PM | Report abuse

In that "Trick or Treat" headline where they published JUST the Gallup traditional poll, which has always tended to be the closest among Gallup's poll, well today its Obama 50, McCain 45.... Obama +5 yet Drudge fails to headline today.... it seems to me Drudge has become a hack!

Posted by: AB68 | October 30, 2008 2:05 PM | Report abuse

Matt Who? If you can't find news on your own, then thats your first problem. Inconseqential.

Posted by: sandradbeachbum | October 30, 2008 2:04 PM | Report abuse

Excellent article Chris....thanks! I believe Matt D. had a chance to gain the respect of American's (really people who keep up to date on news), but he in my opinion has lost it with his lack of promoting the truth. My point simply is Matt has gone down the road, and become another despicable, lying, and outright deceitful person who "would like to call himself a real journalist".

I review the news from 5 to 6 news sites each day, the Drudge Report is now just another media outlet that just likes to "stir" things up and not do what it was "designed" to do....promote/publish the simple facts of "news worthy stories. Sadly he and his site primarily have not...like of course so many others.

That said, I now again go to some of the bloggers who once again have "turned on their ignorant shield's" before posting their comments regarding your article. Do any of you have a "conscious", you cannot "actually believe" the lies, negative decrepit remarks you again have posted? Everyone has their right to their opinion, however when will you stop with the negative post regarding Obama?

I am not saying you have to agree with everything he says; however your ignorant, "no sense" rants are not funny anymore...simply sad. For all of you who are being "paid" to go to sites and post negative blogs about Obama....you just need to stop. For those of you who, because of your "own" cultural/social views that are more "far right" then "real right"...put away the pettiness and vote for "real change".

Senator Obama has always stated that "if we as American's work together (that is the kicker), we can with his help as president make this country better then it has been". I challenge each of you to do this....if you really love your country then take up the challenge. If you do not take up the challenge, then you as well as other's are quite simple "part of the problem and not part of the solution" to our country's ills.

Thank you Chris for "once again" publishing/promoting the truth in your "journalistic" report and concrete investigation of this "news worthy" topic.

Posted by: rayven-t | October 30, 2008 1:56 PM | Report abuse

Has Drudge lost some influence? He has to some degree. However, this loss of influence might be temporary.

In the "The Way to Win," the evidence regarding how Drudge influenced news cycles in 2004 is quite convincing. However, it seems as though there had to be some conditions in place for Drudge to be able to wield the kind of influence that he did in that election.

One of those main conditions is what the central issue of an election is, either measured by polls or the chattering class. The central issue in 2004 was security, both regarding terrorism or the war in Iraq. That issue served George W. Bush's interests.

Full disclosure: I'm a Democrat and was a strong supporter of John Kerry. I believed he had better ways of protecting the country than Bush.

However, that didn't matter in the end. The country saw Bush as a more effective commander in Chief, probably in large part because he was the President at the time of the 9/11 attacks, and for at least a for several months was perceived as a strong and unifying figure in the aftermath. Even though by that time he had already made several well publicized policy mistakes regarding Iraq and other matters, the public image of him as a strong leader after 9/11 was still convinced enough people that he stronger regarding security.

On the other hand was John Kerry. Kerry had to make an affirmative case that he was strong on security in order for voters to take him seriously. He was disadvantaged in this environment for a couple of reasons. One was that Democrats historically have been seen as weaker on security. The second was the fact that Kerry wasn't as skilled of a politician as Bush, and the Republicans (aided by Drudge) exploited these missteps in order to feed a negative narrative that they neatly created for him. There were times that Kerry was able to break through (such as his first debate, when the media wasn't between him and his message) but it wasn't enough.

In other words, the political environment at the time played a large part in this. When Drudge would promote the "Swift Boat Veterans for Truth," this would help feed into a damaging narrative.

The dynamics are completely different this time around. The economy is the primary issue, and this time Democrats are historically stronger on the economy. Additionally, Obama is a more skilled politician than his opponent, also different from the earlier election. This makes it more difficult for Drudge to have the ripple effect he had in '04, because the political environment and Obama's own strong public image (and lack of gaffes) make it more difficult for a negative narrative to take hold. Drudge may still be influencing the news cycle to some extent, but it isn't enough to given the current dynamics.

That isn't to say the dynamics can't change. If Obama is elected and he makes some mistakes, it's possible that Drudge could be a central player in creating a stronger negative image of him.

Posted by: Stecklow | October 30, 2008 1:56 PM | Report abuse

Has Drudge lost some influence? He has to some degree. However, this loss of influence might be temporary.

In the "The Way to Win," the evidence regarding how Drudge influenced news cycles in 2004 is quite convincing. However, it seems as though there had to be some conditions in place for Drudge to be able to wield the kind of influence that he did in that election.

One of those main conditions is what the central issue of an election is, either measured by polls or the chattering class. The central issue in 2004 was security, both regarding terrorism or the war in Iraq. That issue served George W. Bush's interests.

Full disclosure: I'm a Democrat and was a strong supporter of John Kerry. I believed he had better ways of protecting the country than Bush.

However, that didn't matter in the end. The country saw Bush as a more effective commander in Chief, probably in large part because he was the President at the time of the 9/11 attacks, and for at least a for several months was perceived as a strong and unifying figure in the aftermath. Even though by that time he had already made several well publicized policy mistakes regarding Iraq and other matters, the public image of him as a strong leader after 9/11 was still convinced enough people that he stronger regarding security.

On the other hand was John Kerry. Kerry had to make an affirmative case that he was strong on security in order for voters to take him seriously. He was disadvantaged in this environment for a couple of reasons. One was that Democrats historically have been seen as weaker on security. The second was the fact that Kerry wasn't as skilled of a politician as Bush, and the Republicans (aided by Drudge) exploited these missteps in order to feed a negative narrative that they neatly created for him. There were times that Kerry was able to break through (such as his first debate, when the media wasn't between him and his message) but it wasn't enough.

In other words, the political environment at the time played a large part in this. When Drudge would promote the "Swift Boat Veterans for Truth," this would help feed into a damaging narrative.

The dynamics are completely different this time around. The economy is the primary issue, and this time Democrats are historically stronger on the economy. Additionally, Obama is a more skilled politician than his opponent, also different from the earlier election. This makes it more difficult for Drudge to have the ripple effect he had in '04, because the political environment and Obama's own strong public image (and lack of gaffes) make it more difficult for a negative narrative to take hold. Drudge may still be influencing the news cycle to some extent, but it isn't enough to given the current dynamics.

That isn't to say the dynamics can't change. If Obama is elected and he makes some mistakes, it's possible that Drudge could be a central player in creating a stronger negative image of him.

Posted by: Stecklow | October 30, 2008 1:54 PM | Report abuse

Has Drudge lost some influence? He has to some degree. However, this loss of influence might be temporary.

In the "The Way to Win," the evidence regarding how Drudge influenced news cycles in 2004 is quite convincing. However, it seems as though there had to be some conditions in place for Drudge to be able to wield the kind of influence that he did in that election.

One of those main conditions is what the central issue of an election is, either measured by polls or the chattering class. The central issue in 2004 was security, both regarding terrorism or the war in Iraq. That issue served George W. Bush's interests.

Full disclosure: I'm a Democrat and was a strong supporter of John Kerry. I believed he had better ways of protecting the country than Bush.

However, that didn't matter in the end. The country saw Bush as a more effective commander in Chief, probably in large part because he was the President at the time of the 9/11 attacks, and for at least a for several months was perceived as a strong and unifying figure in the aftermath. Even though by that time he had already made several well publicized policy mistakes regarding Iraq and other matters, the public image of him as a strong leader after 9/11 was still convinced enough people that he stronger regarding security.

On the other hand was John Kerry. Kerry had to make an affirmative case that he was strong on security in order for voters to take him seriously. He was disadvantaged in this environment for a couple of reasons. One was that Democrats historically have been seen as weaker on security. The second was the fact that Kerry wasn't as skilled of a politician as Bush, and the Republicans (aided by Drudge) exploited these missteps in order to feed a negative narrative that they neatly created for him. There were times that Kerry was able to break through (such as his first debate, when the media wasn't between him and his message) but it wasn't enough.

In other words, the political environment at the time played a large part in this. When Drudge would promote the "Swift Boat Veterans for Truth," this would help feed into a damaging narrative.

The dynamics are completely different this time around. The economy is the primary issue, and this time Democrats are historically stronger on the economy. Additionally, Obama is a more skilled politician than his opponent, also different from the earlier election. This makes it more difficult for Drudge to have the ripple effect he had in '04, because the political environment and Obama's own strong public image (and lack of gaffes) make it more difficult for a negative narrative to take hold. Drudge may still be influencing the news cycle to some extent, but it isn't enough to given the current dynamics.

That isn't to say the dynamics can't change. If Obama is elected and he makes some mistakes, it's possible that Drudge could be a central player in creating a stronger negative image of him.

Posted by: Stecklow | October 30, 2008 1:53 PM | Report abuse

Excellent article Chris....thanks! I believe Matt D. had a chance to gain the respect of American's (really people who keep up to date on news), but he in my opinion has lost it with his lack of promoting the truth. My point simply is Matt has gone down the road, and become another despicable, lying, and outright deceitful person who "would like to call himself a real journalist".

I review the news from 5 to 6 news sites each day, the Drudge Report is now just another media outlet that just likes to "stir" things up and not do what it was "designed" to do....promote/publish the simple facts of "news worthy stories. Sadly he and his site primarily have not...like of course so many others.

That said, I now again go to some of the bloggers who once again have "turned on their ignorant shield's" before posting their comments regarding your article. Do any of you have a "conscious", you cannot "actually believe" the lies, negative decrepit remarks you again have posted? Everyone has their right to their opinion, however when will you stop with the negative post regarding Obama?

I am not saying you have to agree with everything he says; however your ignorant, "no sense" rants are not funny anymore...simply sad. For all of you who are being "paid" to go to sites and post negative blogs about Obama....you just need to stop. For those of you who, because of your "own" cultural/social views that are more "far right" then "real right"...put away the pettiness and vote for "real change".

Senator Obama has always stated that "if we as American's work together (that is the kicker), we can with his help as president make this country better then it has been". I challenge each of you to do this....if you really love your country then take up the challenge. If you do not take up the challenge, then you as well as other's are quite simple "part of the problem and not part of the solution" to our country's ills.

Posted by: rayven-t | October 30, 2008 1:53 PM | Report abuse

DRUDGE CAN'T FAKE CREDIBILITY ANYMORE...

Drudge seems to have been bought and sold by the right. Perhaps they have exerted some powerful influence on his business affairs, who knows? But it's clear that he has become a shameless ideologue who should not be trusted to set anyone's agenda, let alone that of supposedly objective mainstream media.

If mainstream editors and producers need an external filter, why not commission a reputable journalism organization to construct an alternative?

As I believe someone once commented in this space, some media appear to follow Drudge because they're lazy, not because he's so prescient.

Posted by: scrivener50 | October 30, 2008 1:43 PM | Report abuse

Drudge has lost influence as far as his ability to drive MSM coverage. At one point he was the only game in town so it made sense that segment producers would check Drudge to see what to cover that day. But now that the internet has exploded with so many legitimate blogs they have other resources to turn to.
However in "Red America" his influece is still quite strong. Right wing talk radio still uses him alot, and my conservative freinds still recite his headlines as gospel.
One thing that I think is key is the fact that his site still looks essentially the same as it did in the Monica days. This makes him more appealing to conservatives, and less so to younger, more forward looking, more internet savvy liberals.

Posted by: myhojda | October 30, 2008 1:37 PM | Report abuse

Drudge has lost influence as far as his ability to drive MSM coverage. At one point he was the only game in town so it made sense that segment producers would check Drudge to see what to cover that day. But now that the internet has exploded with so many legitimate blogs they have other resources to turn to.
However in "Red America" his influece is still quite strong. Right wing talk radio still uses him alot, and my conservative freinds still recite his headlines as gospel.
One thing that I think is key is the fact that his site still looks essentially the same as it did in the Monica days. This makes him more appealing to conservatives, and less so to younger, more forward looking, more internet savvy liberals.

Posted by: myhojda | October 30, 2008 1:36 PM | Report abuse

Though Drudge Report is alive and well, any propensity it once had to "report" the news (a premise on which I'm not totally sold) is a distant memory. Drudge has turned into a clearing-house of right-wing talking points - a site where the AM radio crowd can come to find vidication and, more importantly, ammunition for those useless fights on political blogs. He gives them exactly what they want - easy, non-thinking talking points.

The easiest example of Drudge's style over substance approach is the fact that he is constantly posting to articles which give some ironic twist to the global warming "debate." Just today, he posted an article about how it snowed in London which the British Parliment debated a global warming bill. His "support" of Obama was so transparently a tactic to create chaos for the Clintons (in whose demise he obviously has a vested interest) and the Democrats that I'm surprised to see you reporting it as "favorable," Chris. Every day it's something different. And you can see the ripples as his supporters go to the other boards and posit these snippets as reasonable arguments.

The bloggers show up, get their fix (sorry!), and then they take to whatever comment boards will have them. Then they yell and scream (ALL CAPS!!!) in unison, I guess in an attempt to convince the world and themselves that everybody out there feels the way they do.

So don't underestimate Drudge or write its obituary. It may not have the power to stimulate investigative reporting, but it does have the power to control the pundits. Without Drudge, there is no Ashley Todd. Without Drudge, the two-point Ibid poll from last week stays an outlyer. When he posts a story in that headline, his followers take to the "real" news sites to demand acknowledgment. That demand becomes the story and, voila, Matt Drudge has controlled another new cycle.

Posted by: dan_of_dc | October 30, 2008 1:24 PM | Report abuse

" did you see the +4 for Obama in Penn? That's Obama's worst poll in the state in months. Means that McCain will win, right?"

If I'm not mistaken, that's a mason-dixon poll. In MN today, they have Obama up 9, while a new U MN poll has him up 18. M-D has Coleman up by 6.

I'd like to see their cross-tabs for more info, but it sure looks to me like M-D is overweighting Repubs in their sample.

Posted by: bsimon1 | October 30, 2008 1:24 PM | Report abuse

"He certainly lied about never hearing Jeremiah Wright spout anti-American invective."

How do you know? I can imagine him missing thirty seconds from 20 years of church attendence.

Posted by: DDAWD | October 30, 2008 1:24 PM | Report abuse

" did you see the +4 for Obama in Penn? That's Obama's worst poll in the state in months. Means that McCain will win, right?"

If I'm not mistaken, that's a mason-dixon poll. In MN today, they have Obama up 9, while a new U MN poll has him up 18. M-D has Coleman up by 6.

I'd like to see their cross-tabs for more info, but it sure looks to me like M-D is overweighting Repubs in their sample.

Posted by: bsimon1 | October 30, 2008 1:24 PM | Report abuse

Though Drudge Report is alive and well, any propensity it once had to "report" the news (a premise on which I'm not totally sold) is a distant memory. Drudge has turned into a clearing-house of right-wing talking points - a site where the AM radio crowd can come to find vidication and, more importantly, ammunition for those useless fights on political blogs. He gives them exactly what they want - easy, non-thinking talking points.

The easiest example of Drudge's style over substance approach is the fact that he is constantly posting to articles which give some ironic twist to the global warming "debate." Just today, he posted an article about how it snowed in London which the British Parliment debated a global warming bill. His "support" of Obama was so transparently a tactic to create chaos for the Clintons (in whose demise he obviously has a vested interest) and the Democrats that I'm surprised to see you reporting it as "favorable," Chris. Every day it's something different. And you can see the ripples as his supporters go to the other boards and posit these snippets as reasonable arguments.

The bloggers show up, get their fix (sorry!), and then they take to whatever comment boards will have them. Then they yell and scream (ALL CAPS!!!) in unison, I guess in an attempt to convince the world and themselves that everybody out there feels the way they do.

So don't underestimate Drudge or write its obituary. It may not have the power to stimulate investigative reporting, but it does have the power to control the pundits. Without Drudge, there is no Ashley Todd. Without Drudge, the two-point Ibid poll from last week stays an outlyer. When he posts a story in that headline, his followers take to the "real" news sites to demand acknowledgment. That demand becomes the story and, voila, Matt Drudge has controlled another new cycle.

Posted by: dan_of_dc | October 30, 2008 1:23 PM | Report abuse

"He certainly lied about never hearing Jeremiah Wright spout anti-American invective."

How do you know? I can imagine him missing thirty seconds from 20 years of church attendence.

Posted by: DDAWD | October 30, 2008 1:21 PM | Report abuse

See the comment by jims2804 at 11:20. People discount information that does not confirm their beliefs. Reporters were quite prepared to believe any gossip about H. Clinton/Kerry/Gore/B. Clinton. Drudge's narratives reinforced existing conceptual schema, and so reporters were less skeptical about his gossip and became reliant on Drudge as a shaper of the discourse.

Now, reporters have an entirely different set of ideas about Obama. It's not necessarily partisan or ideological, but rather an appreciation of the aura surrounding Obama's campaign -- the crowds, the happy, cute young volunteers, the sense of confidence, the sense of destiny. Reporters buy into that, just like their friends, family, and neighbors do. Drudge's attempts to diminish Obama's ethos run counter to the existing narrative, and so must be discounted. I'm sure political reporters still visit his website regularly, out of habit, but they're much more skeptical of his sources and claims now, to the extent that Drudge is no longer able to create stories or shape the day's news coverage.

Posted by: novamatt | October 30, 2008 1:11 PM | Report abuse

I have been a Drudge fan for years, and what others saw as bias I perceived as Drudge's affinity for juicy stories, the sleazier the better. Sure he was the point man for Clinton-Lewinsky, but he has also been the point man for "KITTEN BORN WITH THREE FACES" or "FILTH: 87 YEAR OLD LIVES WITH 146 DOGS!"

I still get a tingle when I flip over there (I check it a half-dozen times a day) and see the cheesy siren, but I have found myself questioning Drudge's acumen over the last two months. How has he missed out on the $150k wardrobe for Palin? How has he missed out on the McCain camp finger-pointing? Where are the Diva stories? Who but Zouk would pay attention to Drudge's loony post-debate polls?

I still love Drudge, but am glad to have Politico for a counter-balance.

Posted by: bondjedi | October 30, 2008 1:09 PM | Report abuse

Zouk froths:

And yet an old cranky broke loser is within two or three points of the King of the World. Strange.

----------------

Strange indeed.

Rasmussen Obama +5
Diageo/Hotline Obama +6
Reuters/C-SPAN/Zogby Obama +7

Posted by: wpost4112 | October 30, 2008 1:04 PM | Report abuse

Poor McC...looks like someone who's been stood up at the prom...I almost feel sorry for him...


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j2cf0KXLl-E

Posted by: wpost4112 | October 30, 2008 1:00 PM | Report abuse

Zook, did you see the +4 for Obama in Penn? That's Obama's worst poll in the state in months. Means that McCain will win, right?

Posted by: DDAWD | October 30, 2008 1:00 PM | Report abuse

Yes, for me Drudge has lost its prestige once held in news and politics. It seems to be persuaded to the right without objectivity or balance to policy. It centers on character mostly which is subjective, not objective reporting. It appears slanted over the years leaning right. I find other leading news media more balanced in objectivity and I seldom consult Drudge...I actually think they should rename the publication "Grudge." Thank you. Florida, Independent.

Posted by: llafair1 | October 30, 2008 12:59 PM | Report abuse

"Obama's basic decency"?? He broke his promise about public campaign financing, then tried to make it sound like a high-minded, principled decision (instead of the financially advantageous ploy it obviously was). He certainly lied about never hearing Jeremiah Wright spout anti-American invective. He has shown anything but "a new kind of politics." His cynical makeover as a centrist is not convincing at all.

He is ambitious, arrogant, and self-righteous. A true politician. I don't see the basic decency at all.

Posted by: RonManWca | October 30, 2008 12:59 PM | Report abuse

I think most people just view Drudge as a GOP hack in the same mold as Hannity. This doesn't mean he lacks influence, but rather indicates that the only people he still influences are the same people who think Obama is a muslim. In other words, mouth breathing knuckle draggers who wouldn't vote for Obama even if he really was the Messiah.

There will always be a rock solid group of highly ignorant people who simply hate the other side of the aisle without any rational reasoning. Drudge appeals to the GOP's devoted section of this demographic, and nothing more.

Posted by: hiberniantears | October 30, 2008 12:59 PM | Report abuse

Joe the Plumber a no-show.

Priceless.

DEFIANCE, Ohio — Where was Joe?

Here in Defiance — a town that sums up the mood of Senator John McCain right now – the Republican nominee gave a shoutout this morning to America’s most famous plumber, Joe Wurzelbacher, who was, or so the candidate thought, in the audience.

“Joe’s with us today!’’ Mr. McCain hollered at a cold outdoor rally at Defiance Junior High School. “Joe, where are you? Where is Joe? Is Joe here with us today?’’

Nothing.

“Joe, I thought you were here today,’’ Mr. McCain continued, with dimmed enthusiasm.

Still nothing. The crowd murmured.

“All right,’’ Mr. McCain said, realizing that Joe was nowhere to be found. “Well, you’re all the Joe the Plumbers!

-------------------


Maybe Joe's dog ate his talking points.

However, I'm sure all the kids who were bussed in from local high schools enjoyed the day off. Who else would show up?

Posted by: wpost4112 | October 30, 2008 12:58 PM | Report abuse

"Obama's basic decency"?? He broke his promise about public campaign financing, then tried to make it sound like a high-minded, principled decision (instead of the financially advantageous ploy it obviously was). He certainly lied about never hearing Jeremiah Wright spout anti-American invective. He has shown anything but "a new kind of politics." His cynical makeover as a centrist is not convincing at all.

He is ambitious, arrogant, and self-righteous. A true politician. I don't see the basic decency at all.

Posted by: RonManWca | October 30, 2008 12:57 PM | Report abuse

Joe the Plumber a no-show.

Priceless.

DEFIANCE, Ohio — Where was Joe?

Here in Defiance — a town that sums up the mood of Senator John McCain right now – the Republican nominee gave a shoutout this morning to America’s most famous plumber, Joe Wurzelbacher, who was, or so the candidate thought, in the audience.

“Joe’s with us today!’’ Mr. McCain hollered at a cold outdoor rally at Defiance Junior High School. “Joe, where are you? Where is Joe? Is Joe here with us today?’’

Nothing.

“Joe, I thought you were here today,’’ Mr. McCain continued, with dimmed enthusiasm.

Still nothing. The crowd murmured.

“All right,’’ Mr. McCain said, realizing that Joe was nowhere to be found. “Well, you’re all the Joe the Plumbers!

-------------------


Maybe Joe's dog ate his talking points.

However, I'm sure all the kids who were bussed in from local high schools enjoyed the day off. Who else would show up?

Posted by: wpost4112 | October 30, 2008 12:57 PM | Report abuse

Yes, for me Drudge has lost its prestige once held in news and politics. It seems to be persuaded to the right without objectivity or balance to policy. It centers on character mostly which is subjective, not objective reporting. It appears slanted over the years leaning right. I find other leading news media more balanced in objectivity and I seldom consult Drudge...I actually think they should rename the publication "Grudge." Thank you. Florida, Independent.

Posted by: llafair1 | October 30, 2008 12:54 PM | Report abuse

In 2004, amateurs like Drudge ruled the blogosphere. The professionals have taken over in 2008. When I want the latest political info, I look to Politico; when I want polling date, I go to pollster.com. Amateur hour is over.

Posted by: wmw4 | October 30, 2008 12:42 PM | Report abuse

more Bad news for McCain:

Pollster John Zogby:

With less than a week to go, today’s numbers are not a good development for McCain. There is no momentum for him, and the clock is starting to run short. Worse news for McCain today is that Obama hit 50% in the single day of polling, while he dropped back to the low 40s. Obama increased his lead among independents compared to yesterday, has moved into a lead among men, and still holds about one in five conservatives.

http://www.zogby.com/news/ReadNews.dbm?ID=1620
.
.
.


even MORE bad news for MCcain:

A Hidden "Undecided" Vote?:

Typically, pollsters can say little about the undecided voters on their final surveys because the single-digit percentages yield (at best) only a few dozen respondents for analysis. However, the massive rolling-average national tracking surveys offer a unique opportunity to put larger-than-average samples of undecided voters under an analytical microscope.

The pollsters at Financial Dynamics were kind enough to share with Charles Franklin and me the raw, respondent-level data from more than 3,449 interviews conducted from Oct. 1 to Oct. 22 for the Diageo/Hotline poll.

We can learn two things from this data. First, roughly 6 percent of the respondents were initially undecided, but split almost evenly (47 percent for Obama, 53 percent for McCain, n=193) when pushed for how they "lean."

Second, Franklin constructed a statistical model to predict the vote choice among those who expressed a preference, then ran the model among the 267 respondents who were completely undecided. This process allows us to draw on every variable that seems predictive of vote preference -- including party identification, age, race, gender, education, frequency of church attendance and geographic region -- and use it to predict how the currently undecided voters will ultimately "break."

Franklin's finding? The model predicts that the totally undecided voters in this sample will split 54 percent for Obama and 46 percent for McCain (more details on Franklin's model here).

http://www.nationaljournal.com/njonline/mp_20081030_5152.php

Posted by: wpost4112 | October 30, 2008 12:42 PM | Report abuse

I think his influence is definitely waning. When he blared the "Ashley Todd" hoax before full vetting, I think that was the nail in the coffin for many people (and reporters, who should know better).

Let's be honest, it was a story blared because it tore down Obama supporters and was was blantantly race-based. Otherwise, there was NO reason to blare that story in big red font as breaking news.

I also think reporters have missed his absolute devotion to Sarah Palin. Trust me, there has yet to be a negative story about her and all of her foibles posted on the site. Nothing. Nada. It's all about how the media is abusing her and how she's attracted thousands to her rallies, etc. The fact that he pushed for her so hard(and continues to do so) makes him seem all the more out-of-the-loop to most readers.

At the end of the day, Drudge will always appeal to some. But what we've seen in this election is that his out-and-out partisanship is not wearing well. People want less division (that's why you see Fox News ratings starting to slide), and both Fox and Drudge have served their purpose and will eventually have to remake themselves or they will end up preaching to the choir.

Posted by: tx-il | October 30, 2008 12:38 PM | Report abuse

Um you(the press) act like idiots in high school. Drudge is an idiot so clearly you followed his lead. Now everyone is revolting, Huffingtonpost gets more traffic. The internet has long been dominated by the left. But the "librul" media followed drudges lead. But the press told themselves we live in a right of center country so they follow some washed up idiot, like dumb kids on the playground.

Posted by: julian9682 | October 30, 2008 12:38 PM | Report abuse

Drudge the Sludge is washed up. Back in the olden days he was the only source for alt viewpoints, but now we have HuffPost, Redstate, Politico, etc, so we don't need to sift through his rumors, lies and hoaxes anymore.

Posted by: hoos3014 | October 30, 2008 12:38 PM | Report abuse

Drudge is obviously a bitter little man with a lot of baggage. I wish these kinds of people would just get therapy rather than spew their "issues" on the reading public. It's pretty transparent that he's yet another one of these people who needs to feel important, but he only reveals on a daily basis his essential insecurities. Readers would be advised to read someone more substantive, and with a lot less emotional baggage.

Posted by: osullivanc1 | October 30, 2008 12:38 PM | Report abuse

Two halves make the whole.

First part, Drudge was the beneficiary of the intertubes news aggregation. He was among the first and got his break with the Blue Dress. After that, visitation was muscle memory for his viewers.

Second part has more to do with the breakdown of the "impartial journalistic endeavor". I've never thought that this was a natural state. Around the world voting populations look to professionals to aggregate, condense, and "analyze" the important events. Then the consumers review the analysis to form opinions. Newspapers, outlets, usually have a bent reflective of their consumers. Drudge failed to do this and failed to see this. He clearly had the audience, so its a mystery as to why he didn't build on his brand with analysis (Ever seen him on TV? He was self parodying). Or maybe the left just lends itself to the more erudite exercise of analysis paralysis. Eventually, under the burden of the Bush years, even the creaky "on the other hand" required more listing that a ship could withstand. And just like in Blindness, the Blind could see.

Hence, DailyKOS, Huffington Post, etc. The left wants analysis of position because it fervently believes that decisions should be make on knowledge (Carter fielding calls on repairing mail sorting machines anyone?) While the right prefers organizing against external (or internal) threats to a way of life (Morning in America?)

Posted by: mightcan | October 30, 2008 12:36 PM | Report abuse

http://www.fivethirtyeight.com/ is a much better blog. Nate backs up his qualitative analysis with stats.

Drudge is obviously spinning stuff to favor McCain: clearly Drudge thinks his readers are dumb. Soon that will be the core characteristic of his audience: who else would bother to read such nonsense.

Posted by: jrob822 | October 30, 2008 12:36 PM | Report abuse

I can't help but note Chris that more and more you're using posts like this to sit on the fence and make us tell you what we think, rather than the other way round.

On the one hand, it's nice that you're giving us a say (which we had anyway via comments when you were saying something); but essentially this isn't the point of your column.

Surely the purpose of this is to tell us what you think, rather than acting as ringmaster. It also, I can't help but note, makes it far easier for you to avoid making wrong calls.

Can we therefore have somewhat fewer "here's a controversial story - what do you think about it?" posts and a little more "I think this story is significant because of x y and z."

Thanks.

Posted by: adamgray | October 30, 2008 12:36 PM | Report abuse

I can't help but note Chris that more and more you're using posts like this to sit on the fence and make us tell you what we think, rather than the other way round.

On the one hand, it's nice that you're giving us a say (which we had anyway via comments when you were saying something); but essentially this isn't the point of your column.

Surely the purpose of this is to tell us what you think, rather than acting as ringmaster. It also, I can't help but note, makes it far easier for you to avoid making wrong calls.

Can we therefore have somewhat fewer "here's a controversial story - what do you think about it?" posts and a little more "I think this story is significant because of x y and z."

Thanks.

Posted by: adamgray | October 30, 2008 12:36 PM | Report abuse

Drudge the Sludge is washed up. Back in the olden days he was the only source for alt viewpoints, but now we have HuffPost, Redstate, Politico, etc, so we don't need to sift through his rumors, lies and hoaxes anymore.

Posted by: hoos3014 | October 30, 2008 12:36 PM | Report abuse

Drudge the Sludge is washed up. Back in the olden days he was the only source for alt viewpoints, but now we have HuffPost, Redstate, Politico, etc, so we don't need to sift through his rumors, lies and hoaxes anymore.

Posted by: hoos3014 | October 30, 2008 12:36 PM | Report abuse

Drudge is betting on the wrong horse, ergo his influence is diminished. He sounds clueless and reactive.

Huffpost is betting on the right horse and she is beating Drudge in narrating today's political times.

Posted by: rfpiktor | October 30, 2008 12:36 PM | Report abuse

Drudge is obviously a bitter little man with a lot of baggage. I wish these kinds of people would just get therapy rather than spew their "issues" on the reading public. It's pretty transparent that he's yet another one of these people who needs to feel important, but he only reveals on a daily basis his essential insecurities. Readers would be advised to read someone more substantive, and with a lot less emotional baggage.

Posted by: osullivanc1 | October 30, 2008 12:36 PM | Report abuse

MOre bad news for McCain:

"Undecided" Vote?:

Typically, pollsters can say little about the undecided voters on their final surveys because the single-digit percentages yield (at best) only a few dozen respondents for analysis. However, the massive rolling-average national tracking surveys offer a unique opportunity to put larger-than-average samples of undecided voters under an analytical microscope.

The pollsters at Financial Dynamics were kind enough to share with Charles Franklin and me the raw, respondent-level data from more than 3,449 interviews conducted from Oct. 1 to Oct. 22 for the Diageo/Hotline poll.

We can learn two things from this data. First, roughly 6 percent of the respondents were initially undecided, but split almost evenly (47 percent for Obama, 53 percent for McCain, n=193) when pushed for how they "lean."

Second, Franklin constructed a statistical model to predict the vote choice among those who expressed a preference, then ran the model among the 267 respondents who were completely undecided. This process allows us to draw on every variable that seems predictive of vote preference -- including party identification, age, race, gender, education, frequency of church attendance and geographic region -- and use it to predict how the currently undecided voters will ultimately "break."

Franklin's finding? The model predicts that the totally undecided voters in this sample will split 54 percent for Obama and 46 percent for McCain (more details on Franklin's model here).


http://www.nationaljournal.com/njonline/mp_20081030_5152.php

Posted by: wpost4112 | October 30, 2008 12:36 PM | Report abuse

MOre bad news for McCain:

"Undecided" Vote?:

Typically, pollsters can say little about the undecided voters on their final surveys because the single-digit percentages yield (at best) only a few dozen respondents for analysis. However, the massive rolling-average national tracking surveys offer a unique opportunity to put larger-than-average samples of undecided voters under an analytical microscope.

The pollsters at Financial Dynamics were kind enough to share with Charles Franklin and me the raw, respondent-level data from more than 3,449 interviews conducted from Oct. 1 to Oct. 22 for the Diageo/Hotline poll.

We can learn two things from this data. First, roughly 6 percent of the respondents were initially undecided, but split almost evenly (47 percent for Obama, 53 percent for McCain, n=193) when pushed for how they "lean."

Second, Franklin constructed a statistical model to predict the vote choice among those who expressed a preference, then ran the model among the 267 respondents who were completely undecided. This process allows us to draw on every variable that seems predictive of vote preference -- including party identification, age, race, gender, education, frequency of church attendance and geographic region -- and use it to predict how the currently undecided voters will ultimately "break."

Franklin's finding? The model predicts that the totally undecided voters in this sample will split 54 percent for Obama and 46 percent for McCain (more details on Franklin's model here).


http://www.nationaljournal.com/njonline/mp_20081030_5152.php

Posted by: wpost4112 | October 30, 2008 12:36 PM | Report abuse

Drudge only matters to the Fox News crowd. The rest of us surf over there from time to time to get an idea of what these nut cases are up to. His cut and paste "news overview" is so twisted and distorted that only the tinfoil hat brigades actually believes it.

Posted by: mibrooks27 | October 30, 2008 12:36 PM | Report abuse

He's no moderate. In 2005, Obama could have joined the Gang of 14 - the group of seven Democrats and seven Republicans (including McCain) who worked out a compromise to successfully limit judicial filibusters - but he didn't. In his memoir, "The Audacity of Hope," Obama explained his decision thus: "Given the profiles of some of the judges involved, it was hard to see what judicial nominee might be so much worse as to constitute an 'extraordinary circumstance' worthy of filibuster." Moderate? Hardly. Obama even voted opposite 78 senators who confirmed the nomination of Chief Justice John Roberts.

Results don't matter. Obama served on the board of directors of the Chicago Annenberg Challenge from 1995 to 2002. The challenge spent some $49 million to reform Chicago public schools - with nothing to show for it. According to 2003 audit, "There were no statistically significant differences between Annenberg schools and non-Annenberg schools in rates of achievement gain."

In his first memoir, "Dreams from My Father," Obama writes about his days as a community organizer and of his efforts to fight inner-city crime and improve public housing. He barely addresses whether a project met its stated goal of reducing crime or improving housing. To him, the effort worked if participants felt good about being organized.

The pander problem. You see it in his call for a 90-day moratorium on housing foreclosures - which he rightly scoffed when Hillary Rodham Clinton first proposed it. Sounds good - Who cares if it works? Ditto his promised 5 million "green collar" jobs.

One-party rule. With Democrats running the House and Senate, an Obama White House threatens to bust the budget, just as one party-rule bloated federal spending from 2001-2006 with Republicans in charge of both Congress and the executive branch. Already Obama's proposed stimulus package has grown from $60 billion to $175 billion, while D.C. Democrats now are talking about $300 billion package. See what happens if he is elected.

Saunders

Posted by: king_of_zouk | October 30, 2008 12:36 PM | Report abuse

The generation of negative feedback to the Drudge stories seems to be due to the fact that Drudge has an unabashed political agenda even by his own admission and yet news reporters seem to be all too willing to push that agenda.

It just smacks of laziness and irresponsibility and worst of all, is just very antithetical to the journalistic spirit.

Posted by: DDAWD | October 30, 2008 12:36 PM | Report abuse

The generation of negative feedback to the Drudge stories seems to be due to the fact that Drudge has an unabashed political agenda even by his own admission and yet news reporters seem to be all too willing to push that agenda.

It just smacks of laziness and irresponsibility and worst of all, is just very antithetical to the journalistic spirit.

Posted by: DDAWD | October 30, 2008 12:36 PM | Report abuse

Drudge only matters to the Fox News crowd. The rest of us surf over there from time to time to get an idea of what these nut cases are up to. His cut and paste "news overview" is so twisted and distorted that only the tinfoil hat brigades actually believes it.

Posted by: mibrooks27 | October 30, 2008 12:36 PM | Report abuse

CC - your website is as buggy as an Obama campaign promise to lower spending and offer tax cuts.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | October 30, 2008 12:36 PM | Report abuse

Two halves make the whole.

First part, Drudge was the beneficiary of the intertubes news aggregation. He was among the first and got his break with the Blue Dress. After that, visitation was muscle memory for his viewers.

Second part has more to do with the breakdown of the "impartial journalistic endeavor". I've never thought that this was a natural state. Around the world voting populations look to professionals to aggregate, condense, and "analyze" the important events. Then the consumers review the analysis to form opinions. Newspapers, outlets, usually have a bent reflective of their consumers. Drudge failed to do this and failed to see this. He clearly had the audience, so its a mystery as to why he didn't build on his brand with analysis (Ever seen him on TV? He was self parodying). Or maybe the left just lends itself to the more erudite exercise of analysis paralysis. Eventually, under the burden of the Bush years, even the creaky "on the other hand" required more listing that a ship could withstand. And just like in Blindness, the Blind could see.

Hence, DailyKOS, Huffington Post, etc. The left wants analysis of position because it fervently believes that decisions should be make on knowledge (Carter fielding calls on repairing mail sorting machines anyone?) While the right prefers organizing against external (or internal) threats to a way of life (Morning in America?)

Posted by: mightcan | October 30, 2008 12:28 PM | Report abuse

I think this is the begining of the wane for Drudge. I love his site but he's really full of sh!t much of the time when he crafts his heads.

Posted by: derbycityespresso | October 30, 2008 12:17 PM | Report abuse

Drudge was able to shift the campaign narrative before because he played in the margins. An embarrassing picture here, a little-reported story there. But now, his coverage completely flies in the face of the reality of the campaign - namely that Obama is doing very well and the McCain campaign is not. His influence is significantly smaller when he's trying to flip the political narrative 180 degrees, rather than, say, 30 degrees.

Posted by: ManUnitdFan | October 30, 2008 12:17 PM | Report abuse

And yet an old cranky broke loser is within two or three points of the King of the World. Strange.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | October 30, 2008 12:13 PM | Report abuse

The Drudge Report is the cartoon of political blogs. Waste of bandwith.

As a middle class still hard working Vietnam Vet I am very dissappointed in John McCain's pathetic attack campaign.

Posted by: llcc_22 | October 30, 2008 12:10 PM | Report abuse

The Drudge Report is the cartoon of political blogs. Waste of bandwith.

As a middle class still hard working Vietnam Vet I am very dissappointed in John McCain's pathetic attack campaign.

Posted by: llcc_22 | October 30, 2008 12:10 PM | Report abuse

The Drudge Report is the cartoon of political blogs. Waste of bandwith.

As a middle class still hard working Vietnam Vet I am very dissappointed in John McCain's pathetic attack campaign.

Posted by: llcc_22 | October 30, 2008 12:10 PM | Report abuse

I used to be a constant Drudge reader but his "axes to grind" have become a drag. He is extreme right wing without rhyme or reason and because it is so obvious, he has lost his Kingmaker status. The Monica story may have made him but Obama's basic decency has become his downfall.

Posted by: arts_place | October 30, 2008 12:07 PM | Report abuse

I used to be a constant Drudge reader but his "axes to grind" have become a drag. He is extreme right wing without rhyme or reason and because it is so obvious, he has lost his Kingmaker status. The Monica story may have made him but Obama's basic decency has become his downfall.

Posted by: arts_place | October 30, 2008 12:07 PM | Report abuse

I used to be a constant Drudge reader but his "axes to grind" have become a drag. He is extreme right wing without rhyme or reason and because it is so obvious, he has lost his Kingmaker status. The Monica story may have made him but Obama's basic decency has become his downfall.

Posted by: arts_place | October 30, 2008 12:07 PM | Report abuse

I used to be a constant Drudge reader but his "axes to grind" have become a drag. He is extreme right wing without rhyme or reason and because it is so obvious, he has lost his Kingmaker status. The Monica story may have made him but Obama's basic decency has become his downfall.

Posted by: arts_place | October 30, 2008 12:07 PM | Report abuse

Drudge is a businessman. First and foremost, he'll do what it takes to get more traffic on his site. If that means posting something inflammatory or contrarian, then he'll do it.

--------------

Well, he's a crappy business man then. He has lost traffic to Huffington Post.

"HuffingtonPost's September 2008 traffic more than quintupled from September 2007 to 4.5 million uniques, based on data from comScore.

It leapfrogged Drudge Report, which had 2.1 million unique visits, up 70% from a year ago. (Matt was far ahead of Arianna last year, with 1.2 million unique visits to 792,000, respectively.)

http://blogs.wsj.com/biztech/2008/10/23/huffpo-beats-drudge/

Posted by: wpost4112 | October 30, 2008 12:07 PM | Report abuse

Since there is no such thing is objective journalism today (was there ever?), I read multiple papers/blogs online (my favorites list is in excess of two dozen). They range from HuffPo to Drudge and everything in between. Also include a healthy dose of non-US sources. My perspective is center-left, but Drudge and Fox are useful to see where the right-wing is going to come from next. Same reason I used to tune into Limbaugh every so often (that and for laughs). It's interesting to watch the right-wing media handle the GOP meltdown. Some are like "yeah, we screwed the pootch; better spend some time in the wilderness getting our act together". But others desparately hang on and recycle old notions and attack lines which have fallen out of favor. Drudge is kind of in the latter category: still in denial, trying to channel any thin hope about McCain's chances that it can find (as well as desparately trying to spark something - anything - against Obama). But they're mostly out of gas (thankfully). I don't doubt the GOP will revive some day. And I obviously hope their revival is less because of an overreach by the Dems, than it is that the Republicans kind of just grow up after about 14 years of a lot of foolishness. Ever since their Gingrich days with the Contract on America, they've had this politically potent mix of stoking people's irrational fears while gutting the best parts of our democracy. Bush's 8 years just shows what they would look like unchecked. And the Dems were too cowed to really put up a fight until a couple years ago. That's changing, I hope we don't lurch from extreme right to extreme left. Maybe a little "compassionate centrism" could go a long way towards healing our troubles.

Posted by: piedpiper11 | October 30, 2008 12:06 PM | Report abuse

The Drudge Report IMO is at the comic book level of political blogs. Basically a joke that only is good for a chuckle now and then. Meaningless waste of broadwith.

Posted by: llcc_22 | October 30, 2008 12:06 PM | Report abuse

All you had to do was look at Drudge's scores for the debate results to know that Matt had "lost it"!

Posted by: DickNH | October 30, 2008 12:06 PM | Report abuse

Since there is no such thing is objective journalism today (was there ever?), I read multiple papers/blogs online (my favorites list is in excess of two dozen). They range from HuffPo to Drudge and everything in between. Also include a healthy dose of non-US sources. My perspective is center-left, but Drudge and Fox are useful to see where the right-wing is going to come from next. Same reason I used to tune into Limbaugh every so often (that and for laughs). It's interesting to watch the right-wing media handle the GOP meltdown. Some are like "yeah, we screwed the pootch; better spend some time in the wilderness getting our act together". But others desparately hang on and recycle old notions and attack lines which have fallen out of favor. Drudge is kind of in the latter category: still in denial, trying to channel any thin hope about McCain's chances that it can find (as well as desparately trying to spark something - anything - against Obama). But they're mostly out of gas (thankfully). I don't doubt the GOP will revive some day. And I obviously hope their revival is less because of an overreach by the Dems, than it is that the Republicans kind of just grow up after about 14 years of a lot of foolishness. Ever since their Gingrich days with the Contract on America, they've had this politically potent mix of stoking people's irrational fears while gutting the best parts of our democracy. Bush's 8 years just shows what they would look like unchecked. And the Dems were too cowed to really put up a fight until a couple years ago. That's changing, I hope we don't lurch from extreme right to extreme left. Maybe a little "compassionate centrism" could go a long way towards healing our troubles.

Posted by: piedpiper11 | October 30, 2008 12:02 PM | Report abuse

Drudge has a grudge and fudges the facts. Judgment: he's mud.

Posted by: wpost4112 | October 30, 2008 11:50 AM | Report abuse

Drudge lost most if not all credibility with that fake Ashley Todd story. After that I took the Drudge report off of my favorites list

Best Robocall Ever!!! Obama Supporter Drunk Calls
http://sensico.wordpress.com/2008/10/29/best-robocall-ever-obama-supporter-drunk-calls/

Posted by: coba11 | October 30, 2008 11:43 AM | Report abuse

What's with that hat? And how he screws up his face like that?

Does he have pretenses of being some kind of crack gumshoe out of a detective novel?

What a dork.

Maybe he's washing out because now there are not just nerds on the Internet.

But seriously, his website has good news links. And they are not as biased, partisan and propagandist as the Washington Post's are. The Washington Post's partisan agenda-driven culture means its news is one-sided and the point of stories is often less intelligent than they sound. Drudge has good links to good stories.

Posted by: AsperGirl | October 30, 2008 11:43 AM | Report abuse

Drudge lost most if not all credibility with that fake Ashley Todd story. After that I took the Drudge report off of my favorites list

Best Robocall Ever!!! Obama Supporter Drunk Calls
http://sensico.wordpress.com/2008/10/29/best-robocall-ever-obama-supporter-drunk-calls/

Posted by: coba11 | October 30, 2008 11:41 AM | Report abuse

Drudge is a businessman. First and foremost, he'll do what it takes to get more traffic on his site. If that means posting something inflammatory or contrarian, then he'll do it.

He's not as powerful as he once was because he's gone over the top a few too many times with his posts and pundits like CC are starting to fact-check more before going with a Drudge-inspired story. But his site still gets lots of traffic, so he is still shaping the opinion of millions of readers -- which still includes a large majority of the pundustry.

Posted by: mnteng | October 30, 2008 11:41 AM | Report abuse

Drudge is now hawking an anti-climate change message by posting no less than 3 articles mentioning record cold or record snow on his front page. He is trying to dispute the shorthand term "Global Warming", rather than the more correct term "climate change". Climate Change is real, it is happening now, it is human-induced and it will continue to get worse at least until we stop using so many fossil fuels.

Posted by: cyberfool | October 30, 2008 11:41 AM | Report abuse

I'm happy to see you write this post on Drudge. Yes, Drudgeology is dead. Sometimes its good to be a contrarian so the argument never dies, but Drudge's anti-Obama seems like its partisan and thus the effectiveness is gone.
By the way, is anyone in Tampa Bay really serious about voting for John McCain now? He invoked darkness upon them, when he referred to them as the "Devil Rays" in a recent speech. After years of dwelling at the bottom, the Rays dropped the "Devil" this year and then went all the way. John "jinx" McCain brought rain to Pennsylvania and then put a whammy on the Rays by calling them Devils again.

Posted by: AB68 | October 30, 2008 11:41 AM | Report abuse

Drudge is now hawking an anti-climate change message by posting no less than 3 articles mentioning record cold or record snow on his front page. He is trying to dispute the shorthand term "Global Warming", rather than the more correct term "climate change". Climate Change is real, it is happening now, it is human-induced and it will continue to get worse at least until we stop using so many fossil fuels.

Posted by: cyberfool | October 30, 2008 11:36 AM | Report abuse

I'm happy to see you write this post on Drudge. Yes, Drudgeology is dead. Sometimes its good to be a contrarian so the argument never dies, but Drudge's anti-Obama seems like its partisan and thus the effectiveness is gone.
By the way, is anyone in Tampa Bay really serious about voting for John McCain now? He invoked darkness upon them, when he referred to them as the "Devil Rays" in a recent speech. After years of dwelling at the bottom, the Rays dropped the "Devil" this year and then went all the way. John "jinx" McCain brought rain to Pennsylvania and then put a whammy on the Rays by calling them Devils again.

Posted by: AB68 | October 30, 2008 11:36 AM | Report abuse

The few times I've Checked Drudge's 'report', I've wondered what all the fuss is about. It looks like an agenda & attention-driven media filter designed to skew media reporting, rather than actually add something productive to public discourse.

Posted by: bsimon1 | October 30, 2008 11:31 AM | Report abuse

Drudge's influence isn't what it once was, I think, because the Huffington Post has emerged as an alternative tipsheet. HP offers bloggers as well as links, so the content is richer.

Posted by: pjkiger1 | October 30, 2008 11:28 AM | Report abuse

Matt Fudge? How boring.

Posted by: koolkat_1960 | October 30, 2008 11:28 AM | Report abuse

Some mountains are made when tectonic forces cause molten magma to push up through weaknesses in the crust. The mountain continues to grow as long as plates and crust remained aligned, allowing the mountain to get bigger and bigger. Eventually however, the plates shift, the heat energy is cut off and the mountain goes dormant. We still see the mountain, but it is a lifeless relic. Erosion and gravity are the remaining forces upon the mountain. Thus it is with Drudge.

Posted by: optimyst | October 30, 2008 11:28 AM | Report abuse

37thand0,

Please try to post your thoughts ONE time rather than multiple postings of the same information.

Happy to have your voice in the conversation but we want to keep it as much of a dialogue as we can.

Thanks,
Chris

Posted by: Chris_Cillizza | October 30, 2008 11:27 AM | Report abuse

Another "Whack Job" going down hill and good riddance. Take Limbaugh, Hannity, O'Reilly and the rest of the "slime machine" with you.

Posted by: NotBubba | October 30, 2008 11:26 AM | Report abuse

CC, your Drudge obsession became boring a long time ago. I'm not sure if you keep posting about him because you want him to notice you, or because you like the increased traffic when hundreds of Drudge posters come here to fill up the site with crap. Either way, it's pathetic. Stop.

Posted by: Blarg | October 30, 2008 11:24 AM | Report abuse

Scrudge is nothing more than a POS mouthpiece for the right wing retards running the GOP. He and his friends will be wandering the policical wasteland for the for the next 8-12 years....good riddance a hole.

Posted by: pgiaquinto | October 30, 2008 11:22 AM | Report abuse

The Ashley Todd fiasco shot his credibility with any fair-minded viewer. To be completely fair, after trying to force the racially charged story into the mainstream media, he didn't try to bury the story as soon as Ms. Todd was exposed as a fraud.

He is throwing as much sludge at the wall as he can in the final weeks, in the desperate hope that something sticks. It's not nearly as effective as if he attempted to drive a single idea or two, and repeated it ad nauseum.

Posted by: BradHanson | October 30, 2008 11:21 AM | Report abuse

.

.

.

FACT - Matt Drudge speaks THE TRUTH.

He is the CRUSADER who brought down the Clinton presidency, and Obama should watch out.

Drudge has already called out William Ayers and his role in WATERGATE. Ayers was Obama's teacher in law school.

Drudge demonstrated knowledge of HAWAIIAN reparations planned by Obama.

Drudge showed pictures of OBAMA in native garb of Indonesia, attending worship services.

Drudge revealed Obama's plans to repeal the 21st Amendment and replace our capitalist government/legal system with a SOCIALIST-MARXIST one.

Drudge is FAIR AND BALANCED.

I read him every day. Though I plan on voting for OBAMA, the Obama-bots should be careful of DRUDGE.

.

.

.

Posted by: 37thand0St | October 30, 2008 11:21 AM | Report abuse

Greatest Argument for voting against Obama is this!
America is a government meant to be one of checks and balances. I would not be doing this but if we do not stop him, Obama will have total control over

the Oval Office
the House
the Senate
the Treasury
the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces
appointment of all the lower court Judges
appointment of up to 3 Supreme Court Justices
Control of the Media.
Control of the Nuclear Button!!!!

Posted by: nsabetus | October 30, 2008 11:21 AM | Report abuse

.

.

.

FACT - Matt Drudge speaks THE TRUTH.

He is the CRUSADER who brought down the Clinton presidency, and Obama should watch out.

Drudge has already called out William Ayers and his role in WATERGATE. Ayers was Obama's teacher in law school.

Drudge demonstrated knowledge of HAWAIIAN reparations planned by Obama.

Drudge showed pictures of OBAMA in native garb of Indonesia, attending worship services.

Drudge revealed Obama's plans to repeal the 21st Amendment and replace our capitalist government/legal system with a SOCIALIST-MARXIST one.

Drudge is FAIR AND BALANCED.

I read him every day. Though I plan on voting for OBAMA, the Obama-bots should be careful of DRUDGE.

.

.

.

Posted by: 37thand0St | October 30, 2008 11:20 AM | Report abuse

Drudge -- I check it 5 -6 times/day. As a conservative Republican I argued with my brother (a Democrat) last year that Drudge was middle of the road -- he said it tilted conservative. Several months back, I decided to support Obama -- boy did that change my perspective. I recently confessed to my brother that he was right, but now I have bookmarked the Huffington Post and prefer that to Drudge (still a conservative -- voting straight Rep. + Obama). I can't explain it, but I see all media coverage different now (watch more MSNBC and less FOX).

Posted by: jims2804 | October 30, 2008 11:20 AM | Report abuse

Power is perception. Drudge's power over politics was a direct result of the media's perception of him. As that perception has changed, Drudge lost his power. The reason for the change was simply that Drudge has been around for a while and is no longer "something new." This phenomenon is similar to the fall from grace of such figures as Rush Limbaugh, Bill O'Reilly, etc... The fact that the fix is even writing the above post will lead to a further fall from power on the part of Drudge. He's finished, who's next?

Posted by: sps0618 | October 30, 2008 11:20 AM | Report abuse

It's pathetic, but there are thousands of Americans stupid enough to take the Drudge "report" more seriously than the Colbert Report.

Here's a clue: if it tells you nothing but what you want to hear, it's not news, it's propaganda. You might as well get your political opinions from fictional characters.

Posted by: lonquest | October 30, 2008 11:20 AM | Report abuse

Drudge is a Republican and when their stock falls, so does his.

Plus, people remember that the last time they listened to his garbage, they got George W Bush.

Posted by: Bud0 | October 30, 2008 11:20 AM | Report abuse

Drudge is a Republican and when their stock falls, so does his.

Plus, people remember that the last time they listened to his garbage, they got George W Bush.

Posted by: Bud0 | October 30, 2008 11:17 AM | Report abuse

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