Taking a page from trend-setter Donald Trump, CBS News announced this morning it’s entered into a partnership with Twitter to create an “enhanced viewer experience” for its November 14 Democratic debate. Twitter will provide CBS News with real-time data and “insights”, as well as live reaction and questions from voters across the country, some of which may be used in the debate.
No word yet whether Trump intends to live-tweet this debate, like he did the first one on CNN. Trump has taken credit for goosing ratings on this month’s first Dem debate when he announced he would live-tweet the Anderson Cooper-moderated Q&A with Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders and Those Other Three Guys. That debate wound up clocking a record 16M viewers for CNN, even without Joe Biden. That’s the sixth-biggest non-sports cable telecast in history. In the 25-54 demographic, the face-off logged the best number ever for a Dem debate. CNN’s Ashleigh Banfield bragged on-air the next morning the debate drew “a higher number than the season premiere of The Walking Dead.”
“As the 2016 presidential election cycle begins to heat up, we’ve seen more and more voters across the country join the live presidential debate conversation on Twitter,” Twitter’s Adam Sharp said in today’s announcement, without mentioning Trump. Sharp is head of Twitter’s News, Government and Elections, the company said.
CBS News’ Face The Nation anchor John Dickerson will be the principal moderator for the next Dem debate, from Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa, in conjunction with CBS affiliate KCCI-TV and the Des Moines Register.
The official hashtag will be #DemDebate.