Hello and welcome to Week 12 of the Slatest’s 2016 Twitter Power Rankings. Above, you’ll find our handy interactive of the entire week’s worth of candidate tweets: how many each White House hopeful sent and how often they were retweeted and favorited, along with how each fared in the 140-character fight with their political rivals on both sides of the aisle. (Click to zoom in on a particular candidate, and click again to see the content of each tweet.)
Below, meanwhile, you’ll find our tried-and-true method of ranking each candidate’s single most successful tweet of the past seven days. Together, the two offer a helpful snapshot of which topics dominated the political conversation online and also give us some insight into which contenders are winning the campaign Twitter wars and why.
The ground rules again:
- For the rankings below, we’re defining a candidate’s most successful tweet as the one that receives the most retweets.
- Tweets that include a direct request for a retweet are ineligible for the traditional rankings because that’s cheating. RT if you agree! (Retweet-begging tweets, though, will still appear in the interactive at the top.)
- Only tweets from the past seven days are eligible. Since we’ll publish the weekly rankings every Friday, that means any tweet sent in the seven days prior to when we hit the big red button at around 10 a.m. to cull all the data.
Without any further ado:
1.) Bernie Sanders (Last week: 1)
I'm listening to the #BlackOnCampus conversation. It's time to address structural racism on college campuses.— Bernie Sanders (@BernieSanders) November 12, 2015
2.) Donald Trump (2)
We, as a country, either have borders or we don't. IF WE DON'T HAVE BORDERS, WE DON'T HAVE A COUNTRY!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 12, 2015
3.) Hillary Clinton (3)
4.) Ben Carson (4)
There is something special about this nation. We must never give it away for the sake of political correctness.— Dr. Ben Carson (@RealBenCarson) November 11, 2015
5.) Ted Cruz (5)
After 7 years, the NYT can't unearth a college transcript, but they're sending reporters to Cuba to attack my dad?! https://t.co/WLGviyDhc4— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) November 10, 2015
6.) Jeb Bush (11)
7.) Marco Rubio (8)
Welders make more money than philosophers. We need more welders and less philosophers. #GOPDebate— Marco Rubio (@marcorubio) November 11, 2015
8.) Mike Huckabee (9)
9.) Carly Fiorina (7)
Donald, sorry, I've got to interrupt again. https://t.co/zofyRuHGvX— Carly Fiorina (@CarlyFiorina) November 13, 2015
10.) Martin O'Malley (12)
11.) Rand Paul (6)
IRS says $4 billion to illegal aliens under the program Sen. Rubio wants to double. No program this rife with fraud should be expanded.— Dr. Rand Paul (@RandPaul) November 12, 2015
12.) Bobby Jindal
Obama’s rejection of #KeystoneXL will flush American jobs down the drain... all to appease the agenda of science denying radicals.— Gov. Bobby Jindal (@BobbyJindal) November 6, 2015
13.) John Kasich (13)
14.) Rick Santorum (15)
15.) Chris Christie (10)
16.) George Pataki (14)
17.) Lindsey Graham (18)
18.) Jim Gilmore (17)
Single Tweet Winner: Bernie!
That's five wins in this category in the past 12 weeks for Sanders. This particular victory is all the more impressive, though, given it was the rare example where listening trumped Trump's shouting.
Overall Tweet Winner: Trump!
Get used to it people. That's eight in a row for the Donald, and all signs suggest he's ramping up the crazy, not toning it down. Expect to see Trump in this same spot next week—and every week after until he either quits or goes out in a blaze of nonsensical glory.
Most "Baby Hitler"-Related Tweet: Jeb!
In case you don't want to click through, here's the link Bush sent out along with his "Gotta to do it" tweet:
If only Jeb had similarly clear-cut answers to more relevant foreign policy hypotheticals.