Republican debates have dramatically outperformed Democratic debates in drawing viewers, according to a new report released Friday.

The 12 Republican debates have brought in 186 million total viewers while the nine Democratic debates had a total of 72 million viewers, according to a report by the New Policy Institute.

{mosads}That differs from 2008, when the Republican debates had much lower viewership. In 2008, 16 Democratic debates brought in 75 million total voters while the 14 Republican debates brought in 42 million total viewers.

The GOP debates this year have produced more than five times the audience per debate than their debates in 2008, and almost five times the total audience.

The presence of Donald Trump, the reality television star turned GOP front-runner, has likely had a big impact on those numbers. Trump’s unpredictability on the stage has led to memorable confrontations with media stars such as Fox News’s Megyn Kelly and the other candidates. 

Trump has also taken credit for record television ratings for some of the debates. 

The Democrats have one more debate planned for May, although the date and location haven’t been announced.

Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus said Tuesday the committee is discussing additional debates ahead of the convention in July.

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) this week criticized Trump for ducking new debates.

Tags Donald Trump GOP debates Ted Cruz

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