Mitt Romney’s weekend bombshell naming seven-term Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) as his running mate continues to reverberate across Facebook, according to the Facebook-CNN Election Talk Meter.
In fact, Ryan is now the most talked about politician on Facebook, replacing longstanding placeholder President Barack Obama, according to the cable news network and Facebook, in the first of what the partners say will be a series of stories evaluating the platform’s role in the 2012 elections.
CNN Political Director Mark Preston and Executive Producer Michelle Jaconi say the swing states of Virginia — where Romney announced Ryan as his vice-presidential pick — and New Hampshire were high on the list of buzz-producing states.
Ryan’s relatively low national profile before the pick enabled him to jump up the scale quickly. CNN also notes that Ryan’s Facebook fans skew more male than female.
CNN and Facebook have a complete breakdown of the demographics here.
Facebook-CNN Talk Meter scores:
- Ryan 5.21
- Obama 4.84
- Vice President Joe Biden 4.01
- Romney 3.74
Ryan currently has 501,000 fans since August, when his fan page didn’t even exist. On Saturday, the day the announcement was made, Ryan added 222,100 Facebook fans. and since then has added nearly 238,000 more — an increase of 107 percent.
What this means when the votes are counted in November is anyone’s guess. But it’s clear that Facebook is a critical platform for candidates running in 2012. According to CNN and Facebook, more than one-half of the U.S. population — about 160 million monthly active users — is on the social network. In 2008, there were 35 million monthly active users.
Readers: Are you using Facebook to keep up with the 2012 races?