Could be she's right. The May 23 finale of American Idol attracted 30.7 million viewers. The 2006 mid-term elections? 76,228,938 voters, a turn-out of 36.8%. Of course, many of those watching American Idol are under 18. In a 2003 survey of 526 "tweens" (used here to mean kids 8-14), about half of them had watched American Idol. Variety reports that although American Idol's ratings are down 20% since last year, it's still the top show in the 18-24 age demographic.
The lengthy finale of Fox's "American Idol" dominated the final night of the television season despite coming in down about 20% vs. a year ago, while ABC's season-ender of "Lost" was also down vs. its close of a year ago but was a strong No. 2 for the night.According to preliminary nationals from Nielsen, "American Idol" is expected to average roughly an 11.5 rating/31 share in adults 18-49 and 30.4 million viewers overall for its finale from 8 to 10:09 p.m., down from the 14.2/35 in the demo and 36.4 million viewers overall when the finale was contained to 124 minutes.Of course, what's telling is that with a viewership of 30.7 million viewers, the number of votes for this year's finale of AI was 74 million. That's a high turnout even by Chicago standards.