Whether or not he realizes it, House Speaker Paul Ryan is enjoying a spectacular media ride. As he moves back into the media spotlight as truce-broker between presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump and the GOP establishment, his media visibility has ramped up nicely. Let’s take a look at the numbers, this same time in 2012 and now.
As a presidential contender in May 2012, Ryan’s media rating (comparative 0-100 score of media prominence) was 82 points, and rose +9 points to 91 just prior to the November 2012 general election as Romney’s running mate. Since accepting the House leadership position in fall 2015, Ryan’s rating has been fluctuating around 81 points (6-mo. moving average) with increasing momentum. While positive media sentiment is below the presidential candidate average, his topline rating of 86 puts him in strong rating territory.
With the exception of February’s media cycle, Ryan has spent the better part of the last 8-months in a top-10 media position among his peer group. This rank position is likely to improve as Ryan moves fully into his GOP Convention Chair role. If managed well over the next 4 years, Ryan could start-off a 2020 presidential bid from a much higher media baseline than other contenders. Recall that both Trump and Clinton entered the election cycle with 70+ media ratings. It’s difficult to cultivate the requisite earned media equity to secure a nomination when you start your campaign below 50 points. Ryan is on track to secure an 85+ point media rating between the convention and the November general election.